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Lumberton Residents win Appeal over CSX Transportation, Inc.

by Matthew Lee | Class Action | Share

The fight continues for Lumberton, N.C. residents today as the Court of Appeals reversed in part the order dismissing the Edwards v. CSX Transportation, Inc. case.

In 2016 and 2018, residents of Lumberton suffered devastating flooding that poured through a gap in city levees after Hurricanes Matthew (2016) and Florence (2018). The gap was created by a railway underpass owned by CSX Corporation. This resulting flood damage displaced of hundreds of residents and businesses in what has been called “one of the poorest populations in what is arguably the least developed part of the state.” 

The complaint was filed September 24, 2018 and alleged that CSX signed an agreement with Lumberton in 1978 allowing a temporary berm to be built across the train tracks if there was danger of flooding. CSX, the complaint alleged, refused to allow Lumberton to construct temporary berm during hurricanes Matthew and Florence. As Hurricane Florence was bearing down, CSX allegedly told Lumberton officials that it would consider anyone attempting to stem the flooding from the underpass to be a trespasser and threatened to sue them.

Today the Court of Appeals reversed the dismissal in part sending the case back to the trial court on the Plaintiffs’ claims that CSX breached the berm agreement.

Whitfield Bryson LLP’s Matthew Lee commented: “How CSX behaved here was wrong. We’re pleased with the result and even more so that the many Lumberton residents whose homes and businesses were devastated by flooding that could have been prevented will have a fair shot at justice.”

You can read the opinion here.

Class Action Lawyers

Matthew Lee, of Whitfield Bryson LLP, represents the proposed class in this matter. The lawsuit is styled Jimmy Edwards v. CSX Transportation, Inc., case number ca4-2019-01782, in the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals.


Matthew Lee


Matt handles complex litigation, primarily construction defect, product liability, business disputes, and wrongful death cases, and has secured substantial verdicts and settlements in a variety of matters, including multi-million dollar verdicts for homeowners associations in construction defect litigation and large settlements in wrongful death and product liability cases.

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