Rescuers in India have changed their approach to the massive effort to save more than a dozen workers trapped in a collapsed tunnel in western India and are now attempting to dig a parallel tunnel to reach those still underground. Rescue teams have been working around the clock for the past week to reach the workers, who were trapped on New Year’s Day when an interior section of the tunnel collapsed near the Eagma Water Spillway in Ratnagiri district in Maharashtra state.
So far, 15 survivors have been rescued and rushed to a nearby hospital. However, there are believed to be at least 11 workers still trapped at the site, and rescue efforts have become increasingly desperate as time passes.
In light of the situation, rescuers have changed their approach and are now attempting to dig a parallel tunnel next to the collapse in order to provide the trapped workers a way out. This effort is being aided by sophisticated tunnel-digging technology, which includes tunnel-boring machines and cranes, as well as other specialized equipment. The new tunnel should also provide more space for rescue workers to maneuver, and experts hope that it will be easier to clear debris and set up ventilation for the workers.
This new approach is being implemented in coordination with medical teams, which are providing food, supplies, and medical care to the rescuers and the trapped workers, some of whom may have suffered injuries from the cave-in. Rescue personnel are also working diligently to shore up the tunnel to prevent further collapses.
The operation to rescue the remaining workers is expected to take several days. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has assured the public that the trapped workers will be freed, and he has publicly urged the rescue teams to continue their efforts safely and with maximum expediency.