11 workers rescued from China gold mine after two weeks

Eleven workers trapped for two weeks inside a Chinese gold mine were brought safely to the surface on Sunday.

Rescuers carry a miner who was trapped in a gold mine in Qixia City in east China’s Shandong Province, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021. (Luan Qincheng/Xinhua via AP)

State broadcaster CCTV showed workers being hauled up one-by-one in baskets on Sunday afternoon, their eyes shielded to protect them after so many days in darkness.

One worker was reported to have died from a head wound following the explosion that deposited massive amounts of rubble in the shaft on Jan. 10 while the mine was still under construction.

The fate of 10 others who were underground at the time is unknown. Authorities have detained mine managers for delaying reporting the accident.

The cause of the accident is under investigation but the explosion was large enough to release 70 tonnes of debris that blocked the shaft, disabling elevators and trapping workers underground.

Rescuers drilled parallel shafts to send down food and nutrients and eventually bring up the survivors, 10 of whom had been in a lower chamber and one in a separate area slightly closer to the surface.

–AP