MORGANFIELD, Ky. (AP) _ Army bomb experts removed an incendiary device found on a conveyor belt near a coal processing plant operated by the strike-bound Peabody Coal Co.

The device was discovered Friday after it apparently misfired, said John Goroncy, Peabody's vice president for operations.

The device resembled a milk jug with a timer attached. Kerosene or disel fuel was doused along the belt line.

''We understand it was activated and went off, (but) did not set the fuel on fire,'' said Carl Fulkerson, assistant chief of the Union County Volunteer Fire Department.

Goroncy said he believed the device was strike-related. Jim Grossfeld, a spokesman for the United Mine Workers in Washington denied union involvement in any violence or vandalism.

''It could have been done by disgruntled management employees,'' Grossfeld said. ''There are a number of alternatives, and I assume the law-enforcement authorities are going to investigate it.''

The union has been on strike against selected members of the Bituminous Coal Operators Association since May 10 and has expanded the walkout several times. The union says it has 17,500 members on strike in seven states in Appalachia and the Midwest.