CHARLESTON – A couple is suing Arch Coal and Coal-Mac after they claim the companies are responsible for work-related injuries.

On Feb. 25, 2015, while in the course of his employment with the defendants, Brandon Crum was instructed by his supervisors to weld while standing on scaffolding that was in disrepair, approximately six feet off the ground, according to a complaint filed Feb. 17 in Logan Circuit Court and removed to federal court on March 20.

Crum claims he and other mine employees had complained numerous times to mine management of the dangers of working with the mine’s unsafe equipment, including the scaffolding.

While Crum was welding for less than an hour while standing on the scaffolding, the scaffolding broke, causing him to fall suddenly and violently to the ground below, according to the suit.

Crum claims the defendants failed to ensure that he and other employees had a safe working environment.

The defendants had a non-delegable duty to provide Crum with a safe place to work and to further provide for the exercise of ordinary care and maintenance for the safety of all individuals and invitees upon the premises, according to the suit.

Crum claims the defendants were aware of the specific unsafe working conditions and intentionally exposed them to the unsafe working conditions.

The defendants caused Crum’s injuries, including a cervical spine injury; lumbar spine injury; left shoulder injury; lacerations and bruises; impaired mobility; impaired activities of daily living; permanent physical impairment; physical pain and suffering; mental anguish and suffering; nervousness and anxiety; depression sleeplessness and nightmares; loss of wages and benefits; loss of future earning capacity; medical expenses; annoyance and inconvenience; and various other out-of-pocket expenses and damages, according to the suit.

Crum and his wife, Denise Crum, are seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. They are being represented by Karen S. Hatfield of Lambert Law Office; and J. Christopher White and Steven S. Wolfe of Wolfe, White & Associates.

The defendants are represented by Jeffrey K. Phillips and Jonathan R. Ellis of Steptoe & Johnson.

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia case number: 2:17-cv-01931

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