Uttarkashi Tunnel Collapse: Overnight, rescue personnel in Uttarkashi made great progress in their ongoing efforts to free forty workers who were trapped inside the Silkyara Tunnel. Five pipes, each measuring 900 mm in diameter and 6 metres in length, have now been entirely inserted into the wreckage. But the drilling was momentarily stopped due to the hard material found among the rubble. There are attempts to cut through it with devices that use diamond bits.
Auger Drilling Advances to 25 Meters in Silkyara Tunnel
As of Friday morning at six in the morning, the sophisticated auger drilling equipment had penetrated 25 metres of the tunnel‘s accumulated debris, according to the Silkyara Control Room of the Emergency Operation Centre.
24-Tonne Auger Deployed After Tunnel Collapse
The 24 tonne high-performance auger drilling machine was brought in to expedite rescue operations following the collapse of the under-construction tunnel due to a landslip. To reach the trapped workers, officials anticipate that digging will need to go another 45 to 60 metres. With a remarkable penetration rate of 5 metres per hour, the machine outperforms the previous model in terms of capacity.
Constant Communication Sustains Mental Health Support for Trapped Workers
As the sixth day of the rescue operations approaches, constant communication has been maintained to check and reassure the trapped workers’ mental health. Through pipelines, the stranded labourers have been getting food, water, and oxygen. They are also communicating with rescuers using walkie-talkies. Beside the tunnel, a medical centre has been set up, and neighbouring hospitals are prepared. The introduction of the sophisticated drilling equipment came after a series of unfortunate events, such as a landslip and the breakdown of an earlier drill machine. The new drilling machine was airlifted to the location by the Indian Air Force, which was instrumental in the operation.
Global Expertise at Work
To efficiently handle the delicate alpine terrain, experts from Norway and Thailand, who are renowned for their experience in comparable rescue situations, have been engaged. When Union Minister VK Singh visited the scene, he was upbeat about the rescue efforts and said that the goal is to save every person who is trapped. “All options are being explored. The safety of workers is paramount. We are taking opinions from international organisations,” he said.
ITA President Arnold Dix Monitors Silkyara Tunnel Rescue
The International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association’s president, Professor Arnold Dix, told India Today TV that his group was closely monitoring the rescue attempts and was prepared to provide any support that could be needed. “If the rescue is not affected within the next hours, I will be deploying to India to offer all assistance on behalf of all our member nations. India is one of the world’s leading tunneling nations. We are offering every assistance to India. This is an extremely serious matter, 40 lives are in great peril,” he said.