The statistics released by the Department of Labor show a disturbing trend
in mining fatalities. Looking back over the past four years of data, 2013
saw an increase in the number of fatalities from the previous two years.
While one would hope that 2013 was simply an aberration, the new figures
released for 2014 show that mining fatalities remained relatively constant
at the higher 2013 rate.
The majority of the fatalities come from some of the country’s heaviest
mining states. Over the last ten years, West Virginia has suffered the
most fatalities with 120. Kentucky and Pennsylvania rank second and third
with 82 and 27 fatalities, respectively.
Preventing Mining Injuries & Fatalities
Coal mining has long been considered one of the most dangerous industrial
jobs in the country, but having proper safety measures in place can help
reduce the amount of injuries and fatalities. For example, inadequate
ventilation and using outdated roof control technology in underground
mines are two common causes of avoidable accidents. Additionally, properly
training workers on how to operate power hauling equipment can reduce
the number of mining accidents. Accidents involving heavy machinery were
the leading cause of injury last year.
Regulating the Mining Industry
There are several state and federal agencies that work in conjunction to
regulate the mining industry and help ensure that mineworkers are provided
with a safe workplace. However, those agencies are often underfunded and
unable to adequately inspect mines and enforce the regulations that are
on the books.
In order to ensure a safe workplace, mining companies and mineworkers must
be proactive in implementing and adhering to proper safety protocol and
practicing safe work habits. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the
mining company to ensure its workers are in as safe of an environment
Injured in a Mining Accident?
If you have been injured or a loved one has been killed in a mining accident,
you may be eligible for compensation. If your employer failed in its responsibility
to provide a reasonably safe workplace, it could be held liable for the accident.
Contact our industrial injury lawyers today to learn about your legal rights. We can review the facts of your case
free of charge during your initial consultation.