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Caro 866-466-5789 Caroselli Beachler McTiernan & Conboy in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania represents personal injury, workers’ compensation, Social Security and insurance litigation matters. Contact the experienced attorneys for help.


Asbestos related deaths and illness in Allegheny County higher than national average

Asbestos-related illness and deaths continue to plague residents of Allegheny County and Western Pennsylvania at rates far higher than the national average and in higher numbers than was initially assessed. This, according to a new report from the Environmental Working Group Action Fund. The group's report shows that at least 14,216 people died from asbestos-related illnesses between 1999 and 2013 here in Pennsylvania. PA is considered one of six states that have asbestos-related illness and deaths at 50% - 100% above the national average. Those other states include Maine, West Virginia, Virginia, Delaware, and Montana.

In the last fifteen years, Allegheny County has averaged 107 asbestos-related deaths. That's the highest rate of any county in Pennsylvania. In addition, 28 of PA's 67 counties have asbestos-related death rates that are between four and thirteen times the national average. According to an analyst from the Environmental Working Group, "The death rates are high in areas of the country where people were exposed to industries that used asbestos." A map that goes along with the study shows higher mortality rates in areas that are part of the "Rust Belt" and areas where shipbuilding was prevalent in the 20th century.

Coal company temporarily shut down after fatal accident

On June 28, a long-time employee at a coal mining company died while working in a West Virginia mine. According to the Greene County Coroner's office, the 55-year-old victim died as the result of crushing injuries he suffered while operating a diesel scoop in a mine owned by Dana Coal Company. Authorities say the accident occurred around 12:15 a.m. in the 4 West Mine, near Bobtown, West Virginia.

A spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Protection said that the 10 year veteran employee was in the process of hauling supplies to other mining units and was transiting through a set of airlock doors when they somehow became dislodged from their frame and the framework and doors came tumbling down. Rescuers extricated the injured miner from the collapsed debris and rushed him to the hospital where the Albright, West Virginia, native later died in the emergency room at around 1:30 a.m.

Pennsylvania workplace fatality statistics for 2013

Industrial accidents are often severe, causing catastrophic injuries and deaths. Many times, this is due to the machinery, chemicals or type of transportation used in the industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics keeps track of these accidents and the numbers for Pennsylvania for 2013 -- the latest year available -- are below.

-- In preliminary counts for 2013, there were 176 workplace fatalities in Pennsylvania.

Gas line leaks and explosions are serious matters

In some of our recent blog posts, we have discussed explosions and burns. When people are injured during an explosion or burned in another type of accident, they often suffer very serious injuries. In some cases, the injuries might be fatal.

When it comes to explosions caused by gas lines, the fault sometimes lies with the gas company or the company's employees. All gas lines require proper installation, maintenance and testing. If those activities aren't handled properly, explosions can occur without any warning.

Bottled water recall due to E. Coli concerns

When consumers purchased food and drinks, they expect the products to be free from contaminates. Unfortunately, there are recalls frequently made due to concerns such as E. Coli. Once such recall just occurred in some bottled water brands.

Niagara Bottling has released a recall notice that states the recall is voluntary and is in cooperation with federal and state agencies. That notice also states that the two plants affected by the recall are in Allentown and Hamburg, Pennsylvania. Niagara Bottling, though, says that one of the springs that they are contracted with for their water didn't tell them that E. Coli was found at the source of the spring. Niagara Bottling said that they immediately shut down the bottling facilities, disinfected the bottling lines and sent out the recall notice. However, Niagara Bottling said there was no E. Coli found in the spring water that the company uses and it wasn't found in the finished products either.

Am I at risk for asbestos?

As the health risks of asbestos became more apparent, many people began to worry about their own health and safety regarding the product. Asbestos was used regularly in many different products, so it is understandable that people would be concerned. Fortunately for the average consumer, the use of asbestos was quickly regulated and restricted once the health issues became apparent. Most people nowadays are not exposed to asbestos regularly enough or at a high enough concentration to suffer adverse health effects.

Workers' compensation assistance for all kinds of employees

Many people are familiar enough with workers' compensation benefits to know that they exist for the benefit of employees that are injured on the job so that said employees are not left destitute in the event of an accident. Because these benefits apply to injuries suffered on the job, they are arguably most important to workers with dangerous occupations. Construction workers and laborers come to mind. But it is important that we do not forget that workers' compensation covers employees in many different industries.

Birth injury information and help

Birth injuries are among the most tragic accidents or injuries that can befall a family in Pennsylvania, possibly on par with a wrongful death. This is because while birth injuries are not necessarily fatal, they can potentially affect an individual throughout their entire life. Depending on the circumstances, the injury may also affect the parents as well, as some birth injuries require constant care in order for the victim to live a normal life.

What should I tell my medical malpractice attorney?

Information is the key to any claim, since two different parties are usually telling slightly different stories to prove or deny fault. The more concrete information that you can provide, the more evidence you will have to help you prove your story. With many cases, especially criminal cases, evidence is relatively easy to come by and difficult to misinterpret; if someone's fingerprints are on a gun, it's hard for them to deny using the gun. However, medical malpractice cases can be much more difficult to represent.

What are some common workplace hazards?

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, workplace hazards are divided into categories such as safety hazards, biological hazards, physical hazards, ergonomic hazards, chemical hazards and organizational hazards. The risks associated with any of these areas can mean injury for workers if both employers and employees are not careful.

Safety hazards include spills or tripping hazards that make it more likely individuals will fall, working on high surfaces or ladders and electrical risks such as unmaintained cords or improper wiring. Biological hazards can include chemicals and pathogens, blood or body fluids, animal droppings, viruses, plants or insects. Biological hazards are most likely in medical, industrial and lab environments.