There is good news for people who work in the coal mining industry: on-the-job deaths for coal miners are at a record low. The last week in December the death toll stood at 11, whereas in 2014 there were 16 mining-related fatalities. Three of the deaths occurred in Pennsylvania, the most of any state. Of the deaths that occurred this year, seven happened in underground mines, and four of those were caused by roof or wall collapses.
There could be several reasons for the decrease in miner deaths. Some point to increased safety measures put in place since the 2010 West Virginia Upper Big Branch disaster, the coal dust explosion that killed 29 workers. But it is possible that a decline in the coal industry in general, with fewer people working mining jobs, could also be playing a role.
Whether the decrease in deaths could be taken to be good news from a safety standpoint or bad news because of the overall decline in the industry, the fact is that mine accidents do continue to happen. And when they do, injured workers deserve to have access to timely and appropriate medical care to help them recover from their injuries. Families of workers who have died on the job deserve to be compensated for their untimely loss.
Fires, collapses and explosions are common culprits of mine accidents. For those accidents that don't prove fatal, workers could end up with a variety of injuries, including head injuries, burns, shocks and fractures. In order to get back to work where possible, people working in these physical jobs can benefit from the knowledge and experience of a personal injury lawyer with experience in workplace injury and workers' compensation law.