Chicago subway fire: pay up for terrorism fears

by Walter Olson on July 18, 2006

Personal injury lawyers filing the first lawsuits arising from a July 11 fire and derailment on the Chicago Transit Authority’s Blue Line “said their clients’ damages may be greater than normal due to initial fears that the accident was a terrorist attack.” Attorney Dan Kotin of Corboy & Demetrio, representing plaintiffs, “said the timing of the accident might have magnified their emotional distress. ‘Coming just hours after the subway bombings in India, these women were convinced that they were under attack,’ Kotin said.” Kotin’s clients were treated and released at a hospital at the time; how badly hurt are they now? “I think we’re going to learn over the course of time that the emotional suffering is far worse than the physical pain.” Oh. (Michael Higgins, “First lawsuits filed in subway fire”, Chicago Tribune, Jul. 12).