Meghalaya miners rescue operation LIVE updates: Indian Navy likely to start operation tomorrow

An assessment team from Kirloskar Pumps (KBL) in Kolkata arrived at the remote site of the accident in Meghalaya on Thursday evening at the behest of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, whose party is in the opposition in the state.15 miners are trapped in the flooded rat-hole Ksan coal mines in East Jaintia Hills district since December 13.The Meghalaya government has said it will not call off the rescue operation to evacuate the 15 miners trapped inside a coal pit for the last 15 days in the remote Ksan mining area in East Jaintia Hills district.Read: Too little, too late? Hopes faint as rescue teams rush to MeghalayaA team of Odisha fire services department had left yesterday (Friday) to step up rescue efforts, however, they are yet to reach the spot. :

By Utpal Parashar and David Laitphlang | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON DEC 29, 2018 05:48 PM IST
4:39 pm IST

Indian Navy likely to start operation tomorrow: NDRF

Santosh Kumar Singh, Assistant Commandant, NDRF overseeing operations at the rat hole coal mine said a three member team of Indian Navy visited the site. “They did a recce of the spot, spent 30 minutes inside the main pit. They also held a meeting with us and are likely to start operation tomorrow. Now that they are here we will assist them,” he said.

3:00 pm IST

Navy divers join firefighters

A 15-member team of Indian Navy divers and 21 firefighters from Odisha have Meghalaya’s Ksan village on Saturday to assist the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rescuers in evacuating 15 miners who are trapped inside a flooded illegal coal pit for over two weeks now.

The district administration has temporarily suspended pumping of water from the coal pit since December 24 with the two 25 horsepower pumps became ineffective due to continuous operations.

2:25 pm IST

Took Odisha rescue team over 24 hrs to reach

The Odisha fire services team reached the accident spot around 1 pm today to rescue 15 miners trapped inside Meghalaya’s coal mine. It took them over 24 hours to reach the sport owing to lack of support and coordination from local administration.

1:50 pm IST

Odisha rescue team reaches

The Odisha fire services team has reached the spot with 10 high-powered pumps and have begun flushing out water from the mine.

1:15 pm IST

Rescue ops underway

Here are the visuals of operations that underway in Meghalaya to rescue the 15 trapped miners.

12:01 pm IST

Families seek miracle

Rescue workers were trying to reach 15 coal miners trapped underground for 17 days as families prayed for their safe return, but chances of survival looked slim after floodwaters rushed through the illegal “rat-hole” pit in Meghalaya.

The 15 went to work at the mine in Meghalaya on December 13 and have been underground ever since.

“Only God’s grace and some miracle can help them to be alive,” Kyrmen Shylla, Meghalaya’s disaster management minister, told Reuters by telephone from capital Shillong.

11:15 am IST

Initially told to travel by trucks, then dumpers: Odisha

“Initially we were told that we would be travelling by trucks. Then the plan was changed and it was decided that dumpers would be used to shift the equipment to the accident site, said Sukant Sethi, chief fire officer (Odisha), who is leading the team.

10:50 am IST

3 helmets recovered

Operations to rescue the trapped miners are underway, three helmets have been recovered from from Ksan mine, near Lytein river, according to reports by news agency ANI.

10:30 am IST

Lack of coordination and support

Due to total lack of coordination and support from the local administration in Meghalaya, the 21-member team which left Bhubaneswar on Friday is yet to reach the site in East Jaintia Hills district where the miners are trapped.

The team equipped with 10 high-powered pumps to flush out water from the mine reached Guwahati on Friday morning around 11:30 am, but due to lack of transport provided by Meghalaya they had to wait till 5:45 pm to start their 220 km journey.

10:00 am IST

No food, no blankets: Odisha team

“By the time we reached a primary school (located 25 km from the mine) where we were supposed to spend the night it was 2:00 am on Saturday. There was no person from Meghalaya government’s side who helped us with basic needs,” Sethi said.

“There was no food, blankets or beds for the men to take few hours of rest. We are not used to such cold temperatures in Odisha and had to rush for our mission without carrying enough warm clothes and bedding,” he added.

9:35 am IST

Delays at every step

The Odisha fire services team equipped with 10 high-powered pumps to flush out water from the mine reached Guwahati on Friday morning around 11:30 am, but due to lack of transport provided by Meghalaya they had to wait till 5:45 pm to start their 220 km journey.

8:55 am IST

Odisha team 25 km away from spot

The team equipped with 10 high-powered camps to flush out water from the mine reached Guwahati on Friday morning around 11:30 am, but due to lack of transport provided by Meghalaya they had to wait till 5:45 pm to start their 220 km journey to the start.

“By the time we reached a primary school (located 25 km from the mine) where we were supposed to spend the night, it was 2:00 am on Saturday. There was no one from Meghalaya government’s side to helped us,” said Sukant Sethi, chief fire officer (Odisha), leader of the team.

8:50 am IST

Naval divers on way too

Indian Navy is deploying a 15-member diving team from Visakhapatnam to assist in the rescue operations for the trapped miners in Meghalaya. The team is carrying specialised diving equipment including a re-compression chamber and remotely operated vehicles capable of searching underwater.

The team is expected to arrive on the site on Saturday. An initial assessment to determine an effective response was undertaken by the navy Friday.

8:40 am IST

20 powerful pumps to reach trapped miners soon

Director general of fire service and commandant general, home guards and director civil defence BK Sharma said the team led by chief fire officer Sukanta Sethi left from Odisha on Friday morning in a special aircraft of the Indian Air Force with 20 high-power pumps.

8:35 am IST

Odisha team yet to reach spot

For the 15 miners trapped inside a flooded coal mine in Meghalaya since December 13, the team of Odisha fire services department which came equipped with sophisticated equipment is the best hope till date.

8:30 am IST

Rescue ops enter day 17

15 miners are trapped in the flooded rat-hole Ksan coal mines in East Jaintia Hills district since December 13. Rescue operations are underway.

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