The number of coal miners killed on the job in Kentucky fell to four in 2012, down from eight the previous year when the state led the nation in fatalities.
Kentucky Coal Association President Bill Bissett said Monday the industry is making progress in protecting miners. But he said there clearly remains work to be done.
Nationwide, 19 coal miners were killed on the job in 2012, the second lowest count since the federal government began keeping records more than a century ago.
West Virginia led the nation in 2012 with seven coal fatalities. Kentucky was second. Alabama was third with two. Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee and Virginia each had one.