Sunday, October 10, 2010

Newsy: Chilean Miners Nearing Rescue

The second drill, known as ‘Plan B’, has reached the Chilean miners, who have been trapped underground for 67 days. The rescue attempt might start as soon as Tuesday.

“There has been a break-through in the rescue tunnel which is being dug to reach those thirty-three miners who are trapped 600 meters below the ground. This is sixty-six days since their mine collapsed above them.” (CNN)

Good news finally comes to The San Jose Miners. After more than two months trapped underground, 33 Chilean miners are another step closer to freedom from what’s been called an “underground purgatory.”

We’re analyzing coverage from CNN, CBS, MSNBC, BBC, NY Magazine and The Independent.

Workers originally thought it would take until Christmas for a rescue... but it seems the miners are getting a visit from Santa a little earlier this year.

But the miners have been warned the rescue operation will be dangerous. CBS reports no rescue detail has been overlooked: “...All of the miners will be brought to the surface wearing sunglasses because their pupils have been dialated in the low light... exposure to the sun may damage their eyes.”

Shades aside, not all the miners can be brought up at once and rescue operations will have to go in three separate rotations. MSNBC says the first eleven to be brought to the surface will be the healthiest and most experienced: “...The reason ... is because as that capsule comes up, if they encounter a problem, they want somebody who is calm and collected in the process, who can reach over to the two-way radio, who can turn the live camera that they’ll have on things that are going on, explain and suggest potential solutions should there be problems.”

...but the plans for rescue go beyond just who the first eleven should be. The Independent reports before the miners see the sun, their already crowded living space will host sixteen more men: “Their job will be to check on the men's physical condition and to ensure that they know how to use the rescue capsule safely during the 15 minutes it is expected to take to reach the surface.”

...and while both those on the surface have been reported to have high hopes, New York Magazine cautions not to let the festivities fly until the miners are actually rescued: “...the actual release could still be days away, and Chileans have been warned that the operation was entering ‘its most dangerous phase.’ Chilean President Sebastian Pinera reportedly plans to ‘personally hug each of the miners,’ not a few weeks later, but actually while they are pulled from the rescue shaft.”

...but BBC takes a more optimistic approach about the rescue mission: “...We are in the final stages of this rescue operation. It isn’t all over, by any means, there’ll be some perilous, difficult, times ahead, but just look at how Camp Hope has come alive now.”

Chile’s mining minister says if all goes well, the miners could begin to be freed as early as Tuesday. 

Writer: Christine Slusser

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