Mining has long been regarded as a demanding and dangerous career. On a daily basis, workers must contend with natural elements, less than ideal working conditions, and dangerous equipment and procedures. It is not surprising that injuries can and do happen.
What are some common injuries suffered by miners?
Among the more common illnesses and injuries miners will be afflicted with are those that affect the lungs. This is because of the hazardous materials that hang in the air surrounding workers that they inhale continuously as they work.
One of the diseases most commonly associated with mine workers is black lung, also known as coal workers’ pneumoconiosis. According to the American Lung Association, prolonged exposure to different types of dust are what cause this disease. The most common workplace mineral dusts that are known to have sickened workers are asbestos, rock and sand dust, and dust from coal.
Mining is safer than it used to be, but the risks are still real
Technological advances and a greater focus on workers’ safety have made it much safer to work in the mining industry than in decades past. However, working in a mine will always have inherent risks.
Coal mining accounts for most mining work in the state of Alabama. This specific type of mining employs slightly more than half of all coal mining industry workers in the United States and experiences a higher ratio of work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths.
What should miners do if injured?
If you are a miner who has suffered a work injury, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation to cover the cost of your medial treatment and lost wages. The process of applying for and receiving these benefits can be confusing, so reach out to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to get you back on your feet as soon as possible.