3 people awarded nearly $17 million in Amtrak derailment lawsuit

Nearly two years after the Amtrak derailment near DuPont, the first lawsuit is now in the hands of the jury.

TACOMA, Wash. — Three plaintiffs who sued Amtrak over the 2017 train derailment in DuPont will be awarded nearly $17 million combined for their pain and suffering, a jury decided Friday.

Amtrak had previously admitted negligence when its first paid passenger run on a new route from Tacoma to Portland, Oregon, plunged onto Interstate 5.

Three people were killed, and dozens were injured.

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Dale Skyllinstad was a passenger on the Amtrak Cascades train and Blaine Wilmotte was in a truck on southbound I-5 that morning when a passenger car landed on it.

"There is no doubt that he suffered the loss of a normal life," attorney Sean Driscoll said of Skyllinstad.

Skyllinstad was awarded $7.75 million, $7 million was awarded to Blaine Wilmotte and $2 million was awarded to Wilmotte's wife, Madison Wilmotte.

U.S. District Court Judge Benjamin Settle said a new trial date should be set for fourth plaintiff Adam Harris' claims because a doctor testified about an examination of Harris that was not disclosed to Amtrak before trial.

In June, the National Transportation Safety Board published its final report on the crash, with the agency's vice chairman blasting what he described as a "Titanic-like complacency" among those charged with ensuring safe train operations.

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