Emergency crews responded to a collision between a freight train and a Mercedes at an uncontrolled crossing at Smith Crescent on May 8

Train accident victim launches $5 million lawsuit

Jane Huang suffered ‘catastrophic injuries’ after her vehicle was hit by a train at an uncontrolled Langley railway crossing in 2014

A woman who suffered serious injuries after her vehicle was slammed into by a freight train at an uncontrolled rail crossing in Langley nearly three years ago, has launched a $5 million lawsuit against Canadian Pacific and CN Rail.

Canadian Pacific owns the rail line and CN rail was operating on the track on the day of the collision.

On May 8, 2014, Jane Huang was driving her Mercedes southbound on Smith Crescent when the vehicle was struck by an eastbound CN train travelling 46 km/h at the crossing, “causing her catastrophic injuries,” according to court documents.

The collision sent her car careening into a nearby ditch.

As a result of the accident, Huang suffered a traumatic brain injury, central cord syndrome, a C5 ASIA D spinal cord injury, vertigo, soft tissue injuries and pain to the spine and neck, as well as weakness in her left hand and leg, problems with speech, multiple abrasions, bruises, and strains, nausea and dizziness, and emotional disruption, the court documents show.

Huang wants to prove in court that the crossing was known by the defendants to be dangerous to vehicles prior to the collision and that no safety upgrades to the crossing took place prior to the collision.

She also wants to show the nature of the dangerous conditions surrounding the crossing at various points in time preceding and subsequent to the collision.

In 2016, CBC News identified the Smith Crescent rail crossing as one of the 25 most dangerous in Canada, based on crash records collected by the Transportation Safety Board.

Since 2000, the site has seen five serious train accidents, including one that killed a pedestrian.

• On Feb. 10, 2014, a CN train travelling eastbound at the crossing struck and killed a pedestrian;

• On Dec. 31, 2015, a CN freight train travelling eastbound struck a vehicle travelling southbound on Smith Crescent at the crossing. No one was injured;

• On Dec. 23, 2002, a CN freight train travelling westbound hit a southbound commercial vehicle turning right from Glover Road onto Smith Crescent. The collision is believed to have caused more than $2.5 million in damage.

• On April 13, 2006, a CP freight train travelling eastbound struck a southbound vehicle at the crossing.

As well, Huang contends that in late 2002 and early 2003, a large berm was constructed by Britco Leasing, on property owned by Smithville Properties. The berm is alleged by Huang to have “ultimately caused significant sightline problems that caused the plaintiff’s collision on May 8, 2014.”

Court documents note that in 2007, CN, CPR, the Ministry of Transportation, Transport Canada, Britco and the Township “all agreed that the Crossing warranted significant upgrades to improve the safety of the Crossing and a submission for funding was ultimately made, and approved by Transport Canada”

“Unfortunately, the proposed safety upgrades to the crossing never occurred,” according to the court documents.

Court proceedings got underway today (Monday, March 27) in Vancouver.

– Files from CBC News

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Gurkirat Toor has been charged after allegedly pointing a gun at another driver on Oct. 23 in Abbotsford.
Man charged after gun pointed at another driver in Abbotsford

Gurkirat Toor, 21, previously charged with purple-fentanyl bust

The Abbotsford Teachers’ Union stated that local teachers worked without heat on Friday as secondary principals’ and vice-principals’ were at a work-related retreat in Whistler. (Google)
Abbotsford Teachers’ Union says teachers left in the cold on Friday

Abbotsford School District disagrees, saying all buildings were set to 21C on Pro-D Day

The Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation held its inaugural Grand Gala in November 2019 at Harrison Hot Springs Resort. This year’s event will be held online. (Submitted photo)
Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation holds virtual Grand Gala

Second annual event takes place online on Nov. 20, raising funds for local hospitals

Abbotsford author Katrina Wiggins has been shortlisted for the Page Turner Award eBook Award for her young adult novel, Blind the Eyes.
Abbotsford author shortlisted for literary award for young adult novel

Katrina Wiggins’ book Blind the Eyes is about climate crisis and monsters

Abbotsford’s Devon Toews has signed with the Colorado Avalanche for four years. (Avalanche Twitter photo)
Abbotsford’s Devon Toews signs with Colorado Avalanche

Local product inks four-year deal worth $4.1 million annually

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July. (Langley Advance Times files)
Child’s body cold, no pulse: Off-duty cop testifies in Langley mother’s murder trial

The seven-year-old girl’s mother faces a first-degree murder charge

People march during a climate strike in Montreal, Friday, Sept. 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Judge rejects 15 youths’ climate change lawsuit against Canadian government

Justice Michael Manson has granted the government’s motion to strike the plaintiffs’ claim

A woman walks through check in at WestJet at Pearson International airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Strong support for pre-flight COVID testing ahead of upcoming WestJet trial: YVR

Airport is partnering with UBC, which is helping choose the method of pre-flight testing

It’s been eight years since Gordon Spencer (pictured), and cousin, ‘Lil’ Bruce Mayo, were gunned down in a home in Langley, and Spencer’s widow is hoping someone who knows something will step up (file)
Eight years on and still no answers in Langley double murder

Wife of victim makes public appeal for people with information to come forward

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Langley resident Shaun Nugent, who died in 2019 shortly after he saved a swimmer from drowning, has been awarded a posthumous medal for bravery by the Royal Canadian Humane Association (Courtesy Nugent family)
Langley man who died after saving swimmer receives posthumous medal for bravery

Shaun Nugent rescued woman from Hayward Lake near Mission in July of 2019

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Washington State Department of Agriculture workers, wearing protective suits and working vacuumed a nest of Asian giant hornets from a tree Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. Scientists in Washington state discovered the first nest earlier in the week of so-called murder hornets in the United States and worked to wipe it out Saturday morning to protect native honeybees. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Nest of ‘murder hornets’ found near South Surrey

String of traps set up along border to capture Asian giant hornets

Most Read