Conductor Dies in Shoving Accident

A CSX conductor was crushed to death in Botkins, Ohio in the early morning hours of Sept. 8 during a mainline shove of a stalled train. Dennis A. Hemme, 59, is survived by his wife and three children. He had six years of service with CSX, and was a member of the United Transportation Union Local 14 (Cincinnati). He was the ninth UTU member to die in an on-the-job accident in 2011, including six since July 25.

The accident occurred on the CSX railroad tracks close to the Auglaize-Shelby County borde, approximately 110 miles north of Cincinnati. Hemme was pronounced dead at the scene by Auglaize County Coroner Dr. Thomas Freytag.

Auglaize County Sheriff's Office deputies and the CSX investigators are jointly handling the investigation.

"Nothing at the scene indicated anything more than a work related accident," said Auglaize County Sheriff Al Solomon.

According to the sheriff's department report, it appears that the southbound train was having trouble crossing a small grade. Another engine was pushing the train to assist it getting over the incline.

When the train succeeded in getting over the incline, the engine was stopped and the two were disconnected. Hemme was between the train and the engine when the train rolled back into the engine pinning him between the two, and was crushed to death.

If your loved one is killed while working for a rail company, you have the right to seek compensation for your loss. Contact an experienced FELA lawyer to learn more.