As Coal Jobs Vanish, Miners Search for New Careers

Energy Associated Press

As the number of Appalachian coal jobs plummets, former miners are looking to federal programs to help them launch new careers.

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These ex-miners are taking free classes and learning skills to become HVAC repairmen, mechanics and licensed truck drivers.

The programs are well intentioned but can help only a fraction of the thousands of workers who have been laid off in Kentucky, West Virginia, and Virginia. And one of the common complaints among the ex-miners is that the new jobs don't pay as well as coal mining.