A Maryland man who says he was hurt on the job has sued the operator of the underground coal mine where he worked, as well as an employment agency that hires contract employees and sends them to a variety of mines.
In his lawsuit, the man states he was working for the agency on Aug. 30, 2011, when he was sent to perform duties as a roof bolter. Because of wet and muddy surfaces on the roadway in the mine, operating equipment became a challenge.
To actually move the roof bolting machine needed to do the job, the man and a co-worker used a scoop to push the machine to where it needed to go to install a permanent roof support.
After completing the installation, the men received notice from management that they were to move the roof bolter for work at another point of the mine. In doing so, the machinery got stuck again.
Seeing the problem, a manager told an apprentice miner to assist with the removal by moving the scoop to where it was stuck and tow the machine to its new station.
According to the lawsuit, the man’s injury occurred after he told the apprentice miner to stop. The man and his co-worker spotted that the cable towing the machine was not properly set up. As he went to modify its position, the apprentice miner moved the scoop without making sure the man was out of the way, the lawsuit states.
As a result, the man said he was crushed between the roof bolter and the mine wall. According to the lawsuit, the accident left the man permanently injured after suffering multiple fractures to his pelvis and hip, as well as a ruptured bladder.
The man’s lawsuit contended that both his employer and the mine operators did not take employee safety into account when they allowed an apprentice with little or no training or experience to operate dangerous equipment.
The injured minor is asking for both compensatory and punitive damages. He has a right to seek compensation for his injuries just as he should have had a right to a safe workplace.
Source: The West Virginia Record, Maryland man sues Vindex for work injuries,” Kyla Asbury, Sept. 19, 2012