Thursday, November 25, 2010

New Zealamd Industry: Mining disaster: 2nd blasted blast seals fate of 29 miners

Associated Press via Yahoo! News by Joe Morgan and Ray Lilley (Nov24,2kt0):

 GREYMOUTH, New Zealand – Rescue teams were in full gear and ready to begin searching for 29 missing miners when toxic gas levels suddenly increased touching off an explosion that dashed all hopes of a rescue, a lost miner's brother and police said Thursday.

Prime Minister John Key declared the disaster a national tragedy, and across New Zealand on Thursday flags flew at half staff and many churches held services for people wanting to show respect for the miners.
Wednesday's massive explosion deep inside the mine on New Zealand's South Island came five days after the men were caught underground by a similar blast and only hours after rescuers reported their first progress in the rescue attempt.
A drilling team broke a narrow shaft through to the mine section believed to be holding the missing workers and two robots had crawled their way into the tunnel, providing the first view from inside the mine.
"She was all go," said Geoff Valli whose brother Keith, 62, perished in the mine. "There was going to be more than one or two (rescuers involved)" in the rescue bid.
"They explained just how close they were to going in. It was bloody scary. It could have been so much worse," he told National Radio.
After such close calls with large groups of miners working underground -- thinking of West Virginia, of Chile, of China, and now these deaths in New Zealand, a certain picture forms of an extremely dangerous industry worldw+d.  We thank God in the Mercy (as Charles Williams used to put it) sent the survivors worldw+de; but we turn quissical eyes to this counter-pattern -- too much endangerment of labourers!  What shoud be our global orientation in regard to such a condition of work in this heavy, dirty labour called "mining"?

-- EconoMix

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