Judge Gives Go-Ahead to Red Line Crash Lawsuit

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    A federal judge is giving the family members of the nine people killed in last year's Red Line Metro train crash permission to move forward with their lawsuit against the transit agency, but the judge also ordered them to rein in parts of their suit.

    Metro's lawyers argue that, because it's a governmental body, Metro is immune from lawsuits. The victims' families, who are seeking $80 million in damages, see it differently.

    Federal Judge Reggie Walton agrees with Metro on some points, and with the families on others.

    For example, Walton said Metro cannot be sued for failing to replace its faulty 1000-series rail cars.

    But he is indicating Metro could face legal action for willfully ignoring thousands of alarms in the lead up to the crash -- something the plaintiffs lawyer Michael Feldman compares to removing the battery from an overactive smoke detector.

    Walton will make a final ruling on that later this month.

    Listen to the complete story at wamu.org

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