California workers may be interested in a series of mining industry fatalities that occurred in a single day across the country. These deaths have prompted one government agency to step up its enforcement and education activities in order to prevent further harm.
On Aug. 3, three mine workers in three different states were killed in workplace accidents. One work accident victim, an 18-year-old at a Virginia quarry, was buried beneath tons of stone and sand when a silo on the job site collapsed. The other incidents took place in South Dakota and Nevada. This is the first time that this many incidents have occurred on a single day since 2002.
The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration is increasing its enforcement of safety regulations in the wake of these three deaths. This will include more facility inspections, concentrating on particular violations that are commonly associated with mining fatalities. Additionally, the agency will put more effort into educating the industry on the dangers that these violations can present. This includes having inspectors on the ground and at the job sites, educating miners and site operators first-hand about the potential for serious and fatal accidents, along with how to prevent them. A spokesperson for the MSHA points out that these efforts will require cooperation industry-wide.
Workplace accidents and occupational diseases are unfortunately common in many industries. A worker who is injured on the job may want to discuss with an attorney the advisability of filing a claim for workers' compensation benefits, which can in some cases include the provision of medical care as well as a portion of wages lost while unable to return to work.
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