Earth Science News  





.
DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Tough tasks ahead after 33 miners' rescue

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers
Santiago, Chile (UPI) Oct 14, 2010
Jubilant Chile faces tough tasks ahead amid nationwide celebration of the rescues of 33 miners after 69 days of being trapped more than 2,000 feet underground.

The biggest headache facing President Sebastian Pinera is how to secure -- urgently and effectively -- the safety of mines across the country that have had a checkered history of regulated safety of operation. Mining earns Chile 40 percent of its total revenue.

More than 30 people a year on average have died in mining disasters over the past decade and 2008 was the worst year in that period, when 43 lost their lives.

Pinera is contemplating tough action against officials responsible for the San Jose mine accident, amid fears the operators will defy compensation claims by resorting to legal loopholes.

Lapses in security and neglect of safety codes that was seen behind the collapse of the mine, trapping the miners below ground, but luckily close to an emergency shelter, are widespread across the mining sector.

Bringing the hundreds of operators, both state-owned and commercial, to book for flouting safety laws and for poor precautionary measures will be an uphill task. Mining inspectorate officials said they lacked equipment and staff to effectively monitor adherence to safety rules across the sector. Critics also cited corruption that allowed some mining operators to carry on despite neglect of rules.

More than 12,000 people work in the mining sector, the number of those dependent on the miners or support crews runs into tens of thousands.

Analysts said the meticulous rescue effort boosted national morale that was deeply affected by Chile's magnitude 8.8 earthquake in February, which coincided with Pinera's inauguration as successor to former President Michelle Bachelet. The temblor killed more than 400 people and affected 1.5 million others.

Pinera said Chile had emerged "more united and stronger than ever" after the successful rescue, which was given religious dimensions after devout Roman Catholics likened it to a miracle. Thanksgiving prayers attracted thousands of Chileans to churches across the country.

Camp Hope, the rescue site in the Atacama desert, erupted in loud cheers as the capsule carrying Luis Urzua, the shift supervisor credited with keeping up the spirits of the group and the last of the 33 miners to be rescued, emerged from the borehole that reached down to the miners' emergency shelter. He was welcomed by Pinera.

"We have done what the entire world was waiting for," said Urzua, adding, "with no further news to report it's your shift now, Mr. President."

Pinera replied: "You are not the same and the country is not the same after this. You were an inspiration. Go hug your wife and your daughter."

Six rescuers who went down into the mine for the final operation carried a banner, "Mission accomplished" as the celebrations gained momentum.

When the men were found alive 17 days after the Aug. 5 mine collapse, Estaban Rojas, 44, promised his wife of 25 years a Catholic church wedding when he was freed. Emerging from the capsule, he dropped to his knees, made the sign of the cross and prayed with her on the surface.

Pinera and Bolivian President Evo Morales praised both the miners and rescuers and

Pinera called the rescues a victory over fear and death.

"I am more convinced than ever that the greatest wealth of our country is not copper, but our miners," he said. Morales said Bolivia wouldn't forget the rescue of Carlos Mamani, the only trapped Bolivian miner. "This incident is uniting us more and more every day," Morales said.

Pinera said the San Jose mine would close forever and he vowed to create safer conditions for those who work in the country's biggest industry. The conditions that caused the accident "will not go unpunished. Those who are responsible will have to assume their responsibility," he warned.

Early estimates cited by Pinera said the cost of the rescue could be $10 million-$20 million, one-third covered by private donations and the rest coming from government funds and state-owned Codelco, the largest copper mining company.




Share This Article With Planet Earth
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook



Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
A world of storm and tempest
When the Earth Quakes



Tempur-Pedic Mattress Comparison

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News
DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Pakistan flood damage 9.7 billion dollars: World Bank, ADB
Brussels (AFP) Oct 14, 2010
The floods that swept Pakistan since July caused about 9.7 billion dollars in damage, almost double the amount caused by a 2005 earthquake, the World Bank and Asian Development Bank said Thursday. The estimate was released by the two banks ahead of a key meeting in Brussels on Friday aimed at reviewing Pakistan's relief and recovery efforts. The Friends of Democratic Pakistan meeting gat ... read more

.
Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
  


DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Malnourished Pakistani flood children face winter peril

Pakistan flood damage 9.7 billion dollars: World Bank, ADB

Tough tasks ahead after 33 miners' rescue

China web users slam nation's mine safety amid Chile rescue

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Polymer Behaviors Below The 1 Nanometer Level

Examining How Materials Bond At The Atomic Level

TanDEM-X Leader Has A Connection With Antennas

Breakthrough Promises Bright Fast Displays At Low Power

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
US lifts Gulf of Mexico deepwater drilling ban

Australia Must Have Better Plan For A Variable Water Future

Alarming Increase In Flow Of Water Into Oceans

Asia facing worsening water crisis: ADB

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Crew circles North Pole in one summer

Himalayan climate change action urged

Disappearing Glaciers Enhanced Biodiversity

Argentine Congress votes to restrict mining near glaciers

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
States rip apart EU bid to fix GM crops mess

U.N. hails eradication of a cattle disease

Uruguay, S. Arabia plan for food security

New Fish Feeds Made From Fish Byproducts

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Cuba on storm alert as Hurricane Paula approaches

Man-made causes cited for Pakistan floods

Hot meals draw pupils back to Haiti's quake hit schools

Hurricane Paula heads for Mexican tourist coast

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Niger's number two junta leader arrested: military

African leaders urged to tackle climate change at forum

Clooney seek diplomatic action in Sudan

Nigerian clamps down on MEND militants

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
'Missing link' fossil debated by science

Research Suggests Volcanoes Nixed Neanderthals

Study finds brain changes during sleep

Canadian helps severely disabled speak through music


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement