Against the clock, 234 rescuers search for trapped miners in Mexico

Some 234 rescuers are looking for the miners who have been trapped since Wednesday after a collapse in a coal deposit in Sabinas, Coahuila.

The day before yesterday, President López Obrador indicated that there were nine affected workers. However, yesterday it was specified that there were 15: five managed to get out and 10 are still stuck.

The work continues amid the anguish of relatives, who wait in the vicinity of the accident site.

“Time is very important. We are very focused (…) to be able to rescue the miners as soon as possible,” said Laura Velázquez, national coordinator of Civil Protection. 

Relatives of trapped miners hold out hope for rescue 

Relatives of the miners trapped after the collapse of a coal deposit in Sabinas, Coahuila, try to maintain faith that they are still alive, although they also complain about their risky working conditions. “What we want is for the bodies to be removed,” says Angélica Montelongo, with a sad and tired look after spending the night awake waiting for news of her brother Jaime de Ella, one of the trapped miners.

“But hey, first of all, God, right? You have to have faith that they are alive,” replies Angelica seconds later.

Montelongo and other relatives accompanied the arduous and rushed work to free the workers all night. They wait in the vicinity of the mine, more than 60 meters deep.

Blasa Maribel Navarro is also waiting behind the security perimeter made up of National Guard agents. Her cousin Sergio Cruz, 41, had only been working in this mine for two months, but for several years in the dangerous job of extracting coal to support his two daughters.

“With the risk that there is and the need at home, it is what they come to. That is why they work in these places”, says the woman, who, despite everything, still hopes to see him alive. “Because we trust in God.”

“Unfortunately, there is not much hope,” added José Luis Amaya, cousin of another of the miners.

The mine has three interconnected shafts through which coal is extracted, according to a diagram presented by the Army.

The accident occurred when workers were digging into an adjoining area filled with water, which collapsed causing a flood.

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