Can Miners File Personal Injury Claims?
In most cases, Pennsylvania employees are prohibited from suing their workplace after an injury, even if the accident was caused by an employer or coworker's negligence. However, there are scenarios where injured miners can seek additional compensation in a personal injury claim.
If you were working as a miner on a construction site, you may have been working with several third parties who have different employers. If another worker made a careless mistake which directly contributed to your accident and injuries, you may have a strong case for a claim.
In some situations, employers can be held liable if a serious accident was caused by a blatant disregard for safety standards. If an investigation reveals serious safety violations, you and other injured miners may have a good chance of receiving additional compensation.
Mining work environments are full of various hazards which have the potential to cause injury, illness, or even death. Although safety standards have improved over the past several decades, miners are still nearly six times more likely to die on the job than workers in all other private industries. Common hazards which require compensation include:
Exposure to Coal Dust & Rockdust
Miners often contract serious respiratory illnesses after inhaling coal dust and rock dust while on the job. Rock dust is intended to protect against explosions and black lung disease, but it can cause other illnesses, such as silicosis, asbestosis, and pneumoconiosis. These illnesses all qualify for benefits, and you may even qualify for compensation if you've only discovered a respiratory illness after leaving the mining industry.
Miners occasionally asphyxiate on hazardous gases while working in enclosed spaces. Additionally, these gases could become ignited and cause a fire or explosion.
Miners are at risk of permanent hearing damage or loss, due to the loud noises made by mining equipment. Hearing issues are eligible for benefits under Workers' Comp, and possibly Social Security Disability, depending on circumstances.
Cave-Ins & Rock Falls
Miners may become crushed when the roof of a mine caves in, or when there is an avalanche of rocks. This can lead to serious debilitating injuries, and in some cases result in paralysis or death.
How Can A Lawyer Help?
Our dedicated work injury lawyers can help injured miners earn every bit of compensation that they're entitled to. We can assist you with all of the important steps you should take after a work injury, including:
- Gathering all of the evidence and documents you need for a claim
- Negotiating with the insurance company
- Filing a successful appeal if your claim has been denied
- Helping you apply for Social Security Disability benefits
- Representing the families of miners killed in accidents
- Determining if you have grounds for a personal injury claim
It's best to act quickly after a work accident so that you can begin recovering as soon as possible. Don't hesitate to contact us today to schedule a free consultation.