Coal mining deaths across the country have already surpassed numbers from the previous year, which some consider cause for concern. With the inherent risks of working in and around coal mines, companies in West Virginia and elsewhere are constantly developing new strategies to increase employee safety. Unfortunately, despite advancements in workplace safety procedures and equipment, coal mine accidents continue to be a significant issue.
In response to such alarming numbers, the United States Mine Safety and Health Administration recently initiated a campaign to promote workplace safety. In the initiative, it has been sending out representatives to evaluate work habits and speak with companies and workers about safety procedures. Similar measures could be crucial to preventing such tragic accidents, perhaps especially since reports list that the majority of deaths occurred among miners with less than one year of experience in the field.
However, the coal miner’s union reportedly claims that this isn’t enough. The union asserts that although these individuals are promoting safety, they aren’t allowed to hand out citations or punish any violations. Although reports of potentially unsafe practices should be enough to give companies and workers pause, unfortunately, sometimes a hefty fine may be what is required to bring any issues to a halt.
Coal mine accidents are a serious concern, and many families have been forced to endure the loss of someone close as a result. With the extensive cost of medical treatment and/or end-of-life expenses, this can place a significant financial burden on surviving family members, potentially prompting a need for financial relief. Since the process can be difficult to navigate, victims and/or family members could speak with an attorney in West Virginia for assistance in pursuing the compensation deserved through all available sources.
Source: cbsnews.com, “Coal mine deaths surge, putting feds and miners at odds“, Aug. 3, 2017