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Crandall Canyon Mine: It’s about over…

Posted by gnn1 on Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Barring any indications that the trapped miners are alive, there will be no more digging for them.  Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) officials have determined that the mine is too unstable for further digging, the risks are too great.  One of the three rescuers killed in a secondary collapse during rescue operations was an MSHA official.

It’s been 15 days now since the collapse.  If the survivors survived the initial collapse, they would have to contend with lack of food, oxygen-poor air (the percentage of oxygen collected from the area the miners are believed to have been was around 16%, survivable, but much lower than the typical 21%), and an unknown water supply.

Families are understandably upset about the decision to halt digging, pleading with officials to use a top-down method, such as that used at the Quecreek Mine in 2002.  But even that could be too dangerous to risk, without a positive indicator that the trapped men are alive.  The conundrum is, if miners are alive, they may be to weak to provide that positive response.

My heart goes out to their families and friends.  But for the sake of protecting others, I agree that digging should cease.  I hope someday the bodies are recovered to give the families closure.

Source: CNN


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