Metro-North victims' families file new lawsuits

Two new lawsuits are being filed by the families of those killed in a Metro-North crash last February.



The victims' families have filed negligence lawsuits, placing blame on Metro-North, the town of Mount Pleasant and Westchester County.



Lawyers representing the families of Joseph Nadol, of Ossining, and Robert Dirks, of Chappaqua, point to a number of factors contributing the deadly crash including visibility issues for motorists at the crossing, claiming a building there blocks the view of northbound trains.



Metro-North engineer Steven Smalls Jr. is also listed as a defendant in the lawsuit. At the time of the crash, Smalls was traveling at 58 mph, two miles below the speed limit and braked before impact, reducing the train's speed to 49 mph.



Ellen Brody, the Edgemont woman who drove her SUV onto the tracks seconds before the train came through, was not listed as a defendant.



Documents already released by the NTSB cite Brody's husband telling investigators that he believes the crossing is so confusing that his wife had no idea she was driving in front of the oncoming train.



The NTSB is expected to release its final findings on the crash in the coming weeks.


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