Working inside a mine is certainly not without risk. People have to ensure that the proper safety precautions have been taken in order to prevent a serious workplace accident. In addition to wearing protective gear, California workers should use the proper measures to shield against falling rocks and mine collapses. As a recent incident illustrates, these worksites are inherently dangerous.

The Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve in Contra Costa County serves as an educational experience for visitors on the weekend to learn about the mining industry. According to a spokeswoman for the East Bay Regional Park District, professionals including engineers and contractors inspect the mines daily to spot potential safety problems. Weekend tours will lead people hundreds of feet into the mines.

One morning, a worker was standing on scaffolding to stabilize the Hazel-Atlas Mine. He was roughly 200 feet inside when a rock struck him in the chest. Co-workers placed the man on a backboard and took him to the top of the mine, where emergency responders took over and airlifted him to the hospital. A fire inspector with Contra Costa County said there is a concern about internal injuries as well as the shortness of breath and chest pain the worker said he was experiencing.

The incident will be reported to the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, according to a fire marshal. Suffering a serious workplace injury such as this could mean an employee has to miss wages while racking up medical bills. Anyone who has experienced an on-the-job injury should consult with a workers’ compensation attorney to secure the maximum benefits allowed.

Source: KRON4, “Worker injured after being hit by rock inside Contra Costa County mine,” Annie Andersen, June 9, 2015