The Conversation: A Look Inside the Mining Life

VIDEO: Dan Harris talks with a filmmaker about the lives of coal miners

The West Virginia mining community suffered a huge blow Monday afternoon when a massive mine explosion killed 25 people and left four others trapped deep inside the mountain. Today officials are holding on to a slim hope that the remaining miners will be found alive. Meanwhile, the community surrounding Massey Energy Co.'s Upper Big Brach mine in Whitesville, W. Va., is mourning the massive loss. The worst U.S. mining accident in more than 25 years, this disaster has left many people with questions regarding the importance of safety in the mining industry.

VIDEO: Dan Harris talks with a filmmaker about the lives of coal miners Play

In today's Conversation ABC's Dan Harris talks with West Virginia native and filmmaker Mari-Lynn Evans about the culture of coal mining. Evans, who grew up just an hour away from the Upper Big Branch mine in Montcoal, W. Va., is the woman behind the new documentary Coal Country. The film takes a look at the brutality and necessity of life in a coal mine for the people of West Virginia. Harris and Evans discuss the dangers of everyday life for these miners, the risks the coal companies are willing to take when it comes to safety, and what needs to be done to make coal a safer industry for the miners of Appalachia.

All this in today's Conversation.

If you want to learn more about the documentary Coal Country, click here.