On July 15, 2008, Friehiwet Tahir was standing on the Chicago Transit Authority’s Argyle L station platform. As the train approached the station, Friehiwet extended her right arm into the train’s right-of-way. The train struck her elbow. She lost her balance and fell onto the track’s dock where she died.
On July 5, 2011, Meram Tahir, Friehiwet’s sister, filed a lawsuit against CTA alleging wrongful death. Tahir claimed the CTA had been negligent in choosing not to notice Friehiwet, in failing to stop the train, in failing to keep the train under control, in failing to warn Friehiwet by blowing the train horn and warning of the train’s approach. The lawsuit also claimed that the CTA chose not to apply the brakes and failed to take reasonable precautions to avoid the deadly incident
Tahir also alleged negligence in design and maintenance of the platform and public address system. In addition, Tahir charged that the CTA operated the train with “worn and defective equipment . . .at an excessive and dangerous speed.”