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Associated Press, Published September 14 2010

Appeals court: BNSF case should be retried

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday the case that resulted in a $21 million jury verdict against Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway should be retried.

The families of four young people killed in a 2003 train-car accident in Anoka filed a lawsuit that resulted in one of the highest awards ever in a Minnesota civil case.

The appeals court ordered the case retried because of faulty jury instructions. The Star Tribune says the court left the damage award in place until the conclusion of the next trial.

Last October, a Washington County judge imposed $4 million in sanctions against the railroad, citing a "staggering" pattern of misconduct to cover up its role in the crash that happened largely because a crossing gate wasn't working.

BNSF Railway is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.