Sixth Circuit rules that Federal Railroad Safety Act of 1970 does not create a private cause of action
Rebecca Hampton sued the R.J. Corman Railroad Property Co., arguing that its road crossing signals were inadequate and unsafe. In Kentucky, apparently, unlike Michigan, legislators and judges have preserved a rail company's duty to make grade crossings reasonably safe. In any event, the railroad moved the case to federal court, arguing that the court enjoyed subject matter jurisdiction by reason of the FRSA. The Judges sent the case back to state court, pointing out that the FRSA does not create a federal cause of action and a plaintiff must ground his or her case in state law duties.