Skip to Main Content
Railroad News

Railroad and State Officials Will Meet to Discuss Dangerous Crossing Surfaces after TV Pressure

By Pottroff & Karlin LLC |

(Douglasville, Georgia – January 14, 2013)

Whether or not pressure brought upon Georgia DOT and Norfolk Southern Railway officials had anything to do with it, a meeting has been scheduled for officials from the railroad, state and community to discuss the situation at the Broad Street/Mozely Road/NS RY intersection in Douglasville, GA after Atlanta, GA CBS affiliate WGCL-TV, Channel 46’s “Pothole Patrol” investigatory program claimed the railroad was refusing to fix the crossing after a serious car/train collision, one of over 20 recorded at the crossing due to its surfacing situation.

“Pothole Patrol” host Harry Samler had reported last week that “The crossing may meet railroad specifications, but the drop off is so steep and so easy to misjudge that even Douglasville’s police chief agrees that something must be done,” after the second incident in the past year nearly got motorist Narvis Penson killed when her maroon Ford Taurus became entrapped by the crossing’s drop off.

The victim called the incident “an awful experience,” adding that “I thank God that I’m living and I’m here to tell it.”

“I was just going across the track as I always do to go across on that side and my car got struck on the track,” recalled Ms. Penson. “I got stuck and I couldn’t move. I was very scared. I was hoping I could get out. I was trying to get off the tracks because all I could see was the train lights.”

Bystanders helped the driver out of her car and then restrained her from trying to retrieve her purse as the train bore down upon the stranded vehicle, demolishing it and carrying the wreckage a quarter mile down the tracks.

GDOT had already striped the edges of the pavement last February in hopes of guiding unsuspecting motorists away from the hazardous drop off.

“We are meeting with the railroad and the city next week to discuss temporary solutions,” said Georgia Dept. of Transportation Spokesman Mark McKinnon. “The problem is on railroad right-of-way so GDOT cannot make improvements on their property, but our meeting will help them to understand the scope of the problem and to explore solutions,” he added.

Meanwhile, Norfolk Southern spokeswoman Susan Terpay stated that “We are concerned and so we are going to be meeting with Douglasville city officials and representatives from GDOT. We’re willing – if they want to make some changes – to participate in that.”


Railroad News


Train crash cases are unique and complex with many different potential pitfalls, such as federal preemption. Anytime I get hired or even get a call from a train crash victim, my very first call is to Nathan’s firm. Nathan’s knowledge and experience in handling and trying cases against these litigation savvy railroad companies gives me the confidence to know that the clients and cases I refer to him are getting the best of the best.

James Perrin Lubbock, Texas

I have had the opportunity to work as co-counsel with Nathan on several railroad crossing accidents cases. In each case, Nathan always possessed an incredible knowledge of the law and the facts, possessed a great talent for aggressive - strategic legal planning and trial tactics while, at the same time, displaying great skill as an effective negotiator. I would recommend him to anyone without hesitation.

Scott McCluen Harriman, Tennessee

Nathan Karlin has my strongest endorsement in the field of railroad crossing cases and personal injury law. I had the pleasure of working with Nathan in a complex railroad personal injury case. I was impressed by Nathan’s knowledge, his work ethic, and his dedication to the client. I look forward to working with Nathan on future injury matters. I am also aware firsthand that he has obtained excellent trial and settlement results in numerous cases involving members of the public harmed by railroad companies.

Joseph M. Miller Mandeville, Louisiana

Nathan is a warrior fighting the railroads. As a fellow personal injury lawyer, I have constantly been impressed with his depth of knowledge and his capabilities from case to case. I’d take him into battle with me any day against the biggest railroads and insurance companies on the planet.

Jon C. Clark Austin, Texas

Bob Pottroff has fought for the victims of the railroads’ callous disregard for safety more than any other attorney that I know. I should know because I am currently Chair-elect of the Railroad Section of ATLA.

Robert Schuetze Boulder, Colorado

Mr. Pottroff has shaken the rail industry to its very roots. Settlements are now more common as a result of the way he has exposed the industry’s wrongdoing.

Mike Easley Arkansas

Bob Pottroff’s work in railroad safety law is unmatched and he has been the source of great advice and phenomenal creativity.

Roger Brown Jefferson City, Missouri

In addition to his substantive contributions to railroad grade crossing safety, I have personally observed his untiring efforts and contributions to improving the integrity of the legal system.

Elizabeth Hardy Lake Charles, Louisiana

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8