United States District Court, D. Nebraska
CAROL RIBBING, as the personal representative of the Estate of Gregory Ribbing, deceased; Plaintiff,
UNION PACIFIC RAILROAD COMPANY, Defendant.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
R. Zwart United States Magistrate Judge.
31, 2019, the defendant, Union Pacific Railroad Company
(“Union Pacific”) moved for summary judgment on
all claims filed by the plaintiff, the Estate of Gregory
Ribbing (the “Estate”). (Filing No. 15).
In support of its motion, Union Pacific relies on the
Estate's deemed admissions to requests for admissions
served by Union Pacific and argues that based on those
admissions, Union Pacific is entitled to judgment as a matter
of law. (Filing No. 17). The Estate filed no
evidence opposing the motion for summary judgment. Instead,
the Estate objects and moves to withdraw the deemed
admissions, (Filing No. 18). The Estate seeks to
replace those deemed admissions with a proposed response
which denies each request. (Filing No. 18-1). The
Estate has offered no evidence in support of the denials
within its proposed amended response.
reasons stated below, the Estate's motion (Filing No.
18), will be denied.
Estate's FELA action was initially filed in another
court. With Union Pacific's consent and its agreement not
to assert the statute of limitations, the case was filed in
this court on October 26, 2018. (Filing No. 1). The
decedent, Gregory Ribbing, died on December 27, 2014.
(Filing No. 1 at CM/ECF p. 1). Prior to his death,
he was a hoisting engineer in Union Pacific's Building
and Bridges Department. (Filing No. 1 at CM/ECF p.
2). The complaint alleges exposure to toxins while
working for Union Pacific caused or contributed to Gregory
Ribbing's development of multiple myeloma. (Id.)
Estate's complaint was served on December 5, 2018
(Filing No. 6); Union Pacific's answer was filed
on January 31, 2019. (Filing No. 7). The court
entered an initial scheduling order on February 6, 2019.
Under that order, the Estate's mandatory disclosures were
due on March 18, 2019. (Filing No. 10).
Pacific served requests for admissions on Plaintiff's
counsel on March 25, 2019. (Filing No. 11; Filing No. 17, at
CM/ECF p. 5). The requests asked the Estate to admit:
The decedent's exposure to:
• diesel fuel (Request No. 1),
• diesel exhaust (Request No. 2),
• diesel fumes (Request No. 3),
• benzene (Request No. 4),
• herbicides (Request No. 5),
• creosote (Request No. 6), and/or
• asbestos fibers (Request No. 7), during his employment
with Union Pacific or its predecessor, did not cause or
contribute to his multiple myeloma.
Union Pacific and its predecessor:
• provided the decedent with a reasonably safe place in
which to work as required by the Federal Employers Liability
Act, (Request No. 8);
• acted reasonably to minimize or eliminate the
decedent's exposure to toxic materials and carcinogens,
(Request No. 9);
• took reasonable steps to warn the decedent of the
risks of exposure to potential ...