Accident numbers may indicate that coal mine accidents are on the rise in West Virginia. A recent incident has left yet another miner dead, making this the fifth industry fatality this year. Coal mine accidents are always a possibility in the hazardous industry of mining, but adequate safety standards may reduce the number of these incidents.
The incident is under further investigation by the West Virginia Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training. The miner was hit in the head by a rock as he was working with a roof bolting machine in the Redbone Mining Company's Crawdad No. 1 Mine. The deceased was a section foreman, which would imply that he may have been well aware of all safety procedures and standards in the mine.
It is possible that this incident was a complete accident and that there was nothing that could have been done to prevent this tragedy. However, every mine accident is cause to review the safety standards of each mining company. If it is found that lack of safety or dangerous work conditions led to this fatal incident, the employer could be financially liable to the family of the deceased for damages.
When a worker is injured or killed on the job, workers' compensation should cover costs and expenses. However, if a claim is denied or the family needs extensive financial help, there may be additional options available. The family has the right to seek a full case evaluation in order to determine the optimal way to proceed. Injured workers and families may find it beneficial to reach out for help after tragic coal mine accidents.
Source: herald-dispatch.com, "Miner killed in W.Va. mining accident", Nov. 11, 2014