As reported on WYMT, the rate of mining fatalities in Kentucky dropped 50% in 2012 compared to the previous year. The positive trend is probably mainly caused by layoffs in the coal industry, but also improved safety training has an effect.
"I think we've really concentrated on reducing injuries and fatalities," said Dave Blankenship, the mine safety director for TECO Coal Corp. "I think it's due to a lot of the improved training, improved management strategies and of course I think the equipment continues to get safer and safer."
"No one controls their safety more than the miners themselves," Blankenship said. "No company, no supervisor can make a miner safe. Only a miner can do that. They have to be able to control their work environment and their work equipment."