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Uttarkashi Tunnel Incident: Rescue Operation In Final Stages

According to a senior officer, rescue efforts have entered the final stages at the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi and they will reach the trapped workers by Thursday morning.

Edited By : Malika Sahni | Updated: Nov 23, 2023 06:31 IST
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Stating that rescue efforts have entered the final stages at the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi, a senior officer said they will reach the 41 trapped workers by Thursday morning.

The workers have been trapped since November 12 when the under-construction tunnel from Silkyara to Barkot got blocked due to debris falling in a 60-meter stretch on the Silkyara side.

“We have inserted pipes 44 meters via horizontal drilling. However, we have found some steel rods in the debris. The machine couldn’t cut those rods. Therefore, NDRF personnel will cut those rods following which we will use the machine again,” said rescue officer Harpal Singh, who is also the Project Head of the under-construction Zoji-la Tunnel project in Kashmir. “I have full confidence that steel pieces can be cut within an hour and in the next 5 hours two pipes can be pushed in and the rescue operation could start,” he said late Wednesday night. He hoped rescuers would be able to reach the trapped workers by 8:30 am.

Earlier on Wednesday, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) personnel entered the tunnel, an official statement issued by Uttarakhand Chief Minister’s Office said.
An ambulance is also deployed inside the tunnel and a team of doctors is also put on stand-by for health check-ups of the workers, it said.

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“Silkyara rescue operation is now in the final stages. The NDRF team is deployed to rescue the workers. An ambulance is deployed inside the tunnel and a team of doctors is deployed in the CHC located at Chinyalisaur for health check-ups of the workers. Chief Minister Pushkar Dhami himself is also present in Uttarkashi,” the official statement said. The rescue operation has been ongoing for the past 12 days.

A 41-bed hospital readied at the Community Health Centre in Chinyalisaur for medical examination and care of trapped workers after they are evacuated from the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi.
NDRF personnel also carried oxygen cylinders at Uttarkashi’s Silkyara tunnel to assist in the ongoing rescue operation.

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The area of entrapment, measuring 8.5 meters in height and 2 kilometres in length, is the built-up portion of the tunnel, offering safety to the labourers with available electricity and water supply.

Source: ANI

First published on: Nov 23, 2023 06:31 AM IST

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