Mining Accidents and Associated Injuries
If you work in the mining industry, you may be at risk for being injured in an accident that could be caused by unavoidable circumstances. It is also possible that you may be injured due to the negligence or reckless actions of another person who works with you or who is responsible for directing the work that you do.
Miners are at risk for myriad injuries that could end their careers or their lives. Most mining accidents, especially those that cause death, happen in mines dedicated to the retrieval of minerals and metals, and the most significant number of deaths occur in the process of mining in hard rock mines and coal mines. At present, around 60 to 70 miners are killed as a result of injuries sustained on the job each year according to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) and thousands are injured.
How Injuries Happen in a Mine
There are many different ways that workers can sustain injuries while at work in a mine. Just like any other workplace, workers can be injured by slipping, tripping or falling and hitting their head, breaking bones, or straining muscles in the process. It is also possible for mine workers to be injured using a variety of equipment like mining carts, drills, flames, rock hammers, and pick axes. But miners must also be concerned about some injury accidents that are not common in other injuries and may result in serious complications for their health.
- The presence of gases in the ground, air or walls of a mine may present a poison hazard or explosion hazard that can kill workers or cause them serious health problems.
- Explosions that go wrong using dynamite or C4 could cause workers to be hit by flying debris, crushed by cave-ins in the mine or otherwise injured by fire or rock.
- Earthquakes caused by mining activities may pose serious hazards to workers in mines, especially if they are working in a shaft mine where the elevator may fall and crush individuals or where the ceiling could cave in.
If you work in a mine it is important to be aware of your surroundings, the state of the mine and your personal safety at all times. Keeping your safety a top priority is the only way to reduce your own personal risk of injury while at work.
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Confidentially reviewed by Attorney Mark Breyer