DEHRADUN: On their third day in northern India, over a hundred rescuers are attempting to rescue dozens of workers trapped underground following the collapse of a road tunnel they were constructing.
Excavators have been diligently clearing debris since Sunday morning at the site in the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand to create an escape tunnel for the 40 workers, all of whom are confirmed to be alive.
Abhishek Ruhela, the top civil servant in Uttarkashi district, expressed optimism, stating, “Our biggest breakthrough is that we have established contact, and oxygen and food supplies are being provided.”
“All necessary measures for their survival are being implemented,” he said, adding oxygen is being actively supplied into the tunnel, and workers are receiving small food items like dry fruit.
The State Disaster Response Force reported that rescuers communicated with the trapped workers via radio on Tuesday.
Ranjit Kumar Sinha, a senior disaster management official, expressed hope for the workers’ potential liberation by Wednesday, noting there was sufficient oxygen in their location “for about five to six days.”
Akash Singh Negi, the son of one of the trapped workers, was able to briefly speak with his father on Tuesday. Negi shared, “I was allowed to speak to my father for a few seconds using the pipe through which oxygen is being supplied to the stranded workers. He said they were safe and asked us not to worry.”