Men Trapped in Collapsed Himalayan Tunnel as Rescue Operation Continues
The first images of a group of men trapped inside a collapsed tunnel in the Himalayas have been released, as efforts to rescue them enter their tenth day. Video footage captured by a camera fed through a pipe by rescuers on the surface shows the men wearing helmets and standing in a large cavern approximately 60 meters (198 feet) inside the mountain.
Rescuers have been providing the 41 trapped laborers with food, water, and oxygen through the pipe since the tunnel collapsed on November 12. However, attempts to free them have been difficult due to the unstable terrain and frequent pauses in drilling.
In a significant development, rescuers managed to insert a 53-meter (174 ft) pipe through the rubble on Monday, allowing them to deliver the workers’ first hot meal of lentils, water, medicines, and oxygen. This success has increased confidence in the operation’s ability to keep the trapped workers safe.
Despite the establishment of a makeshift hospital at the tunnel’s entrance, a rescue does not appear imminent as authorities continue to brainstorm ways to bring the trapped men out. Strategies being explored include inserting another pipe large enough for them to crawl out and drilling from multiple directions, including vertically.
Indian authorities are also considering seeking international assistance from teams experienced in complex rescues. The trapped workers and their families, as well as rescue teams, have expressed hope for alternative rescue options following the recent progress.
The rescue operation involves various organizations, including local police, India’s Disaster Management Authority, and State Disaster Response Fund. The authorities have been working tirelessly to dig through the debris and create an escape route for the trapped men. However, their efforts have been hampered by landslides and the need for more powerful drilling equipment.
As the rescue operation continues, the situation remains complicated and frustrating. Relatives of the trapped men anxiously wait outside the tunnel, hoping for a successful and prompt rescue. The authorities are determined to explore all possible options and are open to seeking international assistance to ensure the safe extraction of the trapped workers.
For more CNN news and updates, visit CNN.com and create an account to access their news and newsletters.