Coal Mining Accidents & Injuries in West Virginia
Compensation for miners and their families
West Virginia’s coal mining industry supports the nation’s economy and energy production, while providing well-paying, secure jobs to our residents. However, coal-mining jobs are some of the most dangerous. Catastrophic accidents and severe illnesses are common in the industry.
Calwell Luce diTrapano PLLC was established the year before the landmark legislation of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act) took effect. Our Charleston lawyers help you recover compensation for occupational diseases you contracted or injuries you suffered as a result of your mining job.
You face harrowing conditions each time you enter the mine. The corporations who profit from your work owe it to you to implement basic safety measures that protect you from potentially devastating mining accidents, such as:
- Mine collapses
- Gas explosions
- Dust explosions
- Natural toxic substances leaks
- Exposure to chemicals used in the mining process
- Malfunctioning mining equipment
- Being caught in between or in machinery with moving parts
Our team holds the owners of your worksite accountable for the accident and recovers compensation if you were injured at work in a mining incident.
Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969
The Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969, referred to as the Coal Act, created the regulatory agency, now the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). The Coal Act helps to ensure the health and safety of miners by:
- Requiring biannual inspections of mines
- Enhancing penalties against violators
- Criminalizing willful violations
- Authorizing the federal government to enforce the laws
- Increasing the level of safety standards in the mines
The Coal Act was amended by the Mine Act in 1977. Although these laws decreased the incidences of mine disasters and increased the survival rate when mine disasters occurred, serious problems in the industry persist. Since 2003, three mines have collapsed in explosions in West Virginia, killing 44 miners.
Coal mining occupational diseases
Because occupational disease symptoms may not manifest for years, you may not initially link your medical problems to your job, or you may not even discover your condition until the disease has progressed to an irreversible or fatal stage. Our Charleston, WV attorneys conduct a thorough investigation to determine if exposure to glues, chemicals, coal dust, crystalline silica, quartz, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, carbon monoxide, methane, hydrogen sulfide or other harmful substances caused:
- Coal workers’ pneumoconiosis (CWP) — often called black lung disease
- Silicosis pneumoconiosis
- Lung cancer
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Chronic bronchitis
- Kidney disease
- Weil’s disease (leptospirosis)
Occupational diseases can diminish your quality of life and reduce your life expectancy. You deserve medical care for illnesses that arise from your mining job and compensation to support your family when a debilitating disease forces you to stop working.
Consult our Charleston legal team about recovering for mining-related injuries or illnesses
For more information about representation for mining accidents, call Calwell Luce diTrapano PLLC at 304-400-6558 or contact our law firm online to schedule an appointment.