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Coal Mining Accident Attorneys

Holding Responsible Parties Accountable After Catastrophic Coal Mining Accidents

According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor, almost 25 out of every 100,000 coal mine employees suffer fatal occupational injuries compared to just 4 out of every 100,000 in other industries. While some coal mining risks may be unavoidable, other injuries and accidents can be prevented. Those injured employees and their loved ones may be entitled to compensation. At Arnold & Itkin, our attorneys are familiar with the unique laws that surround the industry, and we are able to help injured employees and their families handle their injury claims.

Coal mine operators are legally required to maintain a safe mine environment in which their employees can work.

They are also obligated to allow only skilled, highly trained workers to enter the mines. If a mine operator or owner does not meet these state and federally mandated safety requirements, and an employee sustains an injury or suffers a fatal accident, the employee or his or her surviving family members may be able to bring forth a deliberate intent case against the mine operator or owner. As coal mining accident attorneys, we at Arnold & Itkin are adept at investigating mining accidents and helping hold the responsible parties accountable.

Common Causes of Mining Accidents

Coal mine accidents can occur for a variety of reasons and range in seriousness from minor to potentially fatal. Many of the causes of coal mine accidents come from lax safety enforcement, meaning that mine owners and operators could have avoided these tragic incidents.

Some of the more common accidents that occur at coal mines include:

  • Coal Stockpile Collapse
  • Longwall Shield Collapse
  • Roof Collapse
  • Methane Explosions
  • Runaway Mine Cars
  • Defective Tools and Equipment
  • Lack of Safety Equipment
  • Illness as a Result of Coal Dust Exposure

Dangers of Coal Mining

Working in coal mining has been one of the most dangerous professions in our nation's history. Although advancements in technology and safety regulations have helped, mine fires, explosions, and cave collapse still occur and cause serious injuries and loss of life. In the past decade, 450 people have died in mining accidents, many of them in the coal mining and other hard rock mining operations.

Causes of Cave Collapse in Coal Mining

Mining accidents can have a variety of causes, which include leaks of poisonous gases such as hydrogen sulfide or explosive natural gases, especially firedamp or methane. But often the most widespread source of destruction in mining comes from a cave collapse, or cave in, in which the structure of the mine shaft collapses in on itself trapping the workers underneath.

A few causes of a cave collapse include:

  • Dust explosions
  • Collapsing of mine stopes (excavations)
  • Mining-induced seismicity (earthquake)
  • Flooding or other natural disasters
  • Improper use and deployment of mining explosives
  • Failure to maintain the integrity of the mining shaft
  • Damage by malfunctioning or poorly operated equipment

Injuries Suffered from Mining & Cave in Accidents

Given the volatile nature of the work, many injuries can be sustained during a caving accident:

  • Broken bones
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals
  • Brain injury
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Smoke inhalation
  • Paralysis

Who Is Eligible for Compensation After a Coal Mining Accident?

If you are a coal mine employee who has been injured in a mining accident, you may be entitled to compensation to cover the costs of hospital bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering incurred as a result of the tragedy. Mine operators have powerful attorneys working on their behalf to minimize their exposure and pay the least amount of damages to injured employees; you need an experienced mine accident attorney to represent your interests if you have been injured in an accident.

Contact our attorneys today for a free consultation at (888) 493-1629!

Coal Mining Accident FAQ

Who Is at Fault for Coal Mining Accidents?

Multiple parties can be at fault after a coal mining accident. First, employers are required by law to make sure their workers have a safe workplace. This means providing the training, tools, and other things required to maximize safety. Additionally, employers are required to make sure all maintenance and safety procedures are followed by workers. In some instances, companies that produce faulty equipment can also be at fault for a coal mining accident. Second, a coal mining accident creates accountability and helps ensure that more workers don’t have to face the same situation that you or your loved one had to experience.

What Are the Benefits of a Coal Mining Injury Lawsuit?

When a coal mining worker files a personal injury lawsuit, they are demanding answers from the people and companies who caused their injuries. They’re also given the opportunity to recover financial losses that aren’t possible through typical workers’ compensation insurance. Workers can seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages, the cost of future care, and much more.

My Company Offered Me a Settlement. Should I Accept It?

No. Settlements are often meant to be as low as possible while also absolving a negligent company of any future liability. While it might seem like your company is trying to do right by you, it’s always wise to speak with a coal mining accident lawyer to make sure their offer is fair and what you deserve.

Case Results

Check Out Our Victories

  • $171Million One of the Largest Confidential Settlements in History Arnold & Itkin worked over the course of several years to represent clients in a case that many other law firms turned down. In the end, we were able to obtain a record-setting confidential settlement of $171 million.
  • $97Million Massive Settlement Secured for Refinery Workers Arnold & Itkin is proud to share that after months of preparation for trial, our firm was able to secure a huge settlement for clients who were injured in a refinery fire. Find out more now.
  • $44Million The Largest Verdict Ever Won for an Amputee Victim Arnold & Itkin represented a construction superintendent who required a leg amputation after a crane collapse. At the time of the collapse, our client had been standing behind a safety fence 100 feet away when a fallen piece of crane equipment pinned him down. Our firm got him the largest award ever given in a case involving loss of limb, including $8.5 million in punitive damages.
  • $39.7Million Record Verdict Won for Victim of Industrial Accident Attorneys Kyle Findley and Adam Lewis obtained a record $39.744 million verdict on behalf of a client who was burned in a severe dust fire and explosion at a plywood plant in Corrigan, TX.
  • $18.5Million Second Verdict Won for 4 Victims of Geismar Explosion In our second trial on behalf of victims of the 2013 plant explosion in Geismar, LA, Arnold & Itkin won a massive verdict for 4 workers and their families. The verdict will go toward providing the extensive care they have required in the years since the explosion as well as the care they will need for the rest of their lives. This was the second of 2 massive verdicts Arnold & Itkin won against Williams Companies, Inc.
  • $15.5Million Massive Verdict Won for Geismar Explosion Victims Arnold & Itkin won a landmark verdict against Williams Companies, Inc. and child company Williams Olefins LLC for their part in the 2013 explosion that killed 2 workers and injured over 100 more. Williams Companies tried to blame the incident on their limited liability shell company, but the jury saw through the defense. They awarded 95% of the blame to Williams Companies, Inc. and gave our clients the money they needed for medical care.
  • $13.7Million Massive Settlement Won Only Months After Injury Arnold & Itkin represented a plant worker who was seriously injured in an accident on the job. Plant injuries are often complex, taking years to fully investigate and litigate. Fortunately, our firm’s work was able to secure a multi-million dollar settlement mere months after the injury took place. Now our client’s medical expenses and other needs are taken care of for the rest of his life.
  • $12Million Injured Worker Received Settlement for Burn Injuries Our industrial injury lawyers have recently recovered $12 million on behalf of a plant worker who suffered burns when a safety valve failed at the refinery where he was employed. His settlement will go toward providing him with extensive and long-term medical care. His employer chose to settle his case two weeks before trial was set to begin.
  • $11.7Million Settlement Won for Plant Worker Injured During Turnaround Attorneys Kurt Arnold and Jason Itkin successfully recovered $11.75 million on behalf of a man who was injured while working a turnaround at an industrial plant. He was injured because he and his team were not informed of the plant’s dangers, and his family turned to Arnold & Itkin shortly afterward. Our team was able to get him money for his present and future medical expenses less than a year after he was injured.
  • $11.6Million Verdict Secured for a Worker Partially Blinded on the Job Our client was only offered $300,000 by the defendant for his near-total loss of sight in one eye, but the jury only deliberated for less than 2 days before they found the defendant guilty of defective equipment design. They gave our client an award of $11.6 million.
  • $4.97Million Settlement Reached for Orthopaedic Injury Victim Our team worked to represent a client who was severely injured while working at a chemical plant. He was performing construction and maintenance work at the time of the incident. In the end, our firm was successful in settling the case for $4.97 million.
  • $4.8Million Verdict Won for Bereaved Daughter Kurt Arnold recovered $4.8 million for a client whose father was killed after suffering a severe head injury in Port Arthur, Texas. Winning justice for grieving clients is a primary reason we became lawyers, and it's our honor to help clients like this one receive help.
  • $4Million Victim of Plant Explosion Received Millions in Settlement Arnold & Itkin attorneys represented a Mississippi man who was severely injured in a Texas refinery plant explosion. Cases like these require a high level of experience and investigative resources due to the myriad factors involved in a plant explosion. Our attorneys are proud to have helped our client receive a settlement of $4,000,000.
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“I told him, ‘Kurt you’re my hero. You’re my knight in shining armor.’” - Mildred Solar Cortes