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Inexperienced miners at risk for serious workplace accidents

In Louisiana and throughout the United States, inexperienced workers could be at a significantly higher risk of serious injury or even death. As of June 8, seven coal miners have died in accidents across the United States in 2017. Most of them had less than one year of experience in their job and mine at the time, federal officials have reported.

Federal regulators are looking at starting an initiative to determine if newer miners have deficiencies in their training. They expressed that they are hoping to talk to a large number of miners and work with mine operators to do so. Six of the seven deceased miners worked for less than a year in their mines, while five had less than a year's experience for their particular job.

While last year's total of eight deaths of coal miners was a historic low, this year is so far showing an upward trend. Four of the incidents in which miners died this year were in West Virginia, two in Kentucky and one in Montana. Three took place in surface mines, three more in underground mines and one at a processing facility for a surface mine.

Of course, mining incidents aren't limited to fatal accidents. Over a nine-month period looked at by regulators, 931 miners were injured with less than one year of experience at their mine. Only 418 were injured with two years of experience at their specific mine, and 83 with 10 years of experience.

Insufficient training or preparation can play a major role in workplace accidents. Employers have a responsibility to provide proper training and safety equipment and instructions to avoid them. Unfortunately, even with the strongest of protocols in place, occupations like mining can be dangerous. People who have been injured in such an accident may want to have an attorney's assistance when filing for workers' compensation benefits.

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