21 member NDMA team with ten high powered pumps on their way to mine tragedy site

Shillong, Dec. 28: A 21 member team of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) along with equipments are on their way to Ksan area of Lumthari village to aid in the rescue operations of the 15 trapped miners.

After, more than a fortnight since the tragedy wherein 15 miners were trapped inside a coal mine after it got flooded and the pumps — which were locally available and initially used did not provide the desired results, the operation may now go into the “next level” with 20 high pressure pumps on their way.

Apart from the 10 pumps being brought by the NDMA, the Coal India Limited too, after a request made by the Meghalaya government have dispatched 10 high power pumps from its various sub subsidiaries all over the country.

The 21 National Disaster Response Force personnel and 10 high-power pumps were airlifted to Guwahati by the Indian Air Force on Friday morning and from there they are making the onward journey by road.

Meanwhile, on Friday, General Manager of Coal India Limited’s Northeastern Coalfields, J. Borah visited the accident site.

According to Borah, once the NDMA team reach the spot they will survey the area to try and find out from where has the water seeped into the mine.

“Unless that it done it will be very difficult to de-water the shaft,” he said.

The General Manager of Coal India Limited’s Northeastern Coalfields, Coal India Limited also said that ten high power pumps have already been dispatched from all over the country.

“We have got a good number of pumps from our subsidiary companies from Bilaspur, Nagpur, Dhanbad and Ranchi,” Borah said.

According to Borah the pumps are being transported by trucks and trailers. But the question now is how these pumps can be transported into the accident site since the place where the mine is situated is hilly terrain and does not have a proper road.

He also said that he can’t say how many days it will take to dewater the mine after the arrival of the high powered pumps.

“I cannot asses the total quantity of water inside. All I can say is that each pumps has a capacity of 500 Gallons per Minute,” Borah said.

The Coal India Limited official also said that there are many shaft nearby which have been abandoned and one does not know the status of these shafts whether these are filled with water or whether the galleries from the shaft where the accident occurred have been connected with the nearby shafts.

“There we need to have a survey work of the area and need to collect information from the miners where these mines are inter-connected or not,” Borah said.

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