Rescuers See 'Survivable Space' in Mine

Attempts to communicate with miners met by 'heartbreaking' silence
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 11, 2007 4:40 PM CDT
Robert Murray, president and chief executive of Cleveland-based Murray Energy Corp., sits before addressing reporters at the command post in full miners gear Saturday, Aug. 11, 2007, in Huntington, Utah....   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A camera lowered into a Utah mine where six men are stranded showed a 5 1/2-foot “survivable space” today but little else, the AP reports.  Rescuers pulled out the video camera to protect it from flowing water and install another lens, hoping for a wider angle on the cavity—while another, smaller hole was being used to pump oxygen into the nearly airless mine.

Trying to communicate with the missing miners, workers struck the drill steel several times while it was lowered into the crawlspace but got no answer. "It was heartbreaking," said a mine geologist on the scene. Workers are now installing a steel casing in the well so they can lower the camera again and keep it protected from running water.