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Rescuers dig to reach 40 workers trapped in collapsed road tunnel in north India

by Madison Thomas
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Rescue Operation

Rescue operations are underway to liberate 40 workers who find themselves entrapped within the confines of a collapsed road tunnel in northern India. This unfortunate incident transpired as a consequence of a landslide at the construction site located in the state of Uttarakhand.

Remarkably, all the construction personnel have been successfully accounted for and are presently safe. Police officer Prashant Kumar has assured that these workers have been equipped with a supply of both oxygen and water. Moreover, he affirmed that communication has been established with the stranded individuals.

The catastrophic event unfolded on a fateful Sunday in Uttarakhand, a region renowned for its picturesque mountains and revered Hindu temples, which serve as a magnet for pilgrims and tourists alike. Recent years have witnessed a substantial surge in construction activities, encompassing both buildings and road networks, across Uttarakhand. The laborers who now find themselves in this dire predicament were engaged in the construction of a crucial segment of the Chardham all-weather road project—a significant initiative undertaken by the federal government to connect various Hindu pilgrimage destinations.

Confirmation of the exact number of trapped workers came to light on Monday, courtesy of Rajesh Pawar, the project manager at the Navyug Construction Company, entrusted with the responsibility of overseeing the tunnel’s construction.

Rescue endeavors commenced promptly following the incident, with authorities swiftly deploying an oxygen supply system to facilitate breathing for the affected workers. As of the latest update, the rescue team has made significant progress, having advanced 15 meters into the tunnel, with a remaining distance of 35 meters yet to be covered. This intensive effort has involved the diligent deployment of drilling equipment and excavators to painstakingly clear debris throughout the night.

The portion of the tunnel that succumbed to collapse is located approximately 200 meters from its entrance, as confirmed by officials who shared this information with the Press Trust of India news agency.

It’s worth noting that Uttarakhand witnessed another unsettling event in January, when state authorities relocated hundreds of residents to temporary shelters due to the collapse of a temple and the appearance of cracks in over 600 houses, owing to land subsidence in and around the town of Joshimath in the region.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Rescue Operation

What caused the collapse of the road tunnel in northern India?

The collapse of the road tunnel in northern India was triggered by a landslide that occurred at the construction site.

How many workers were trapped in the tunnel?

A total of 40 workers were trapped inside the collapsed tunnel.

Are the trapped workers safe?

Yes, all the trapped construction workers have been confirmed as safe. They have been provided with oxygen and water during the rescue operation.

What is the significance of Uttarakhand in this context?

Uttarakhand is a mountainous state in India known for its Hindu temples and pilgrimage sites. It is where the incident took place, highlighting the region’s importance.

What project were the workers involved in?

The trapped workers were engaged in the construction of the Chardham all-weather road, a significant federal government project connecting various Hindu pilgrimage destinations in the region.

What rescue efforts have been made?

Rescue operations began promptly, with authorities pumping oxygen into the tunnel and deploying drilling equipment and excavators to clear debris. The rescue team has made substantial progress.

Where is the collapsed portion of the tunnel located?

The collapsed section of the tunnel is situated about 200 meters (500 feet) from the tunnel’s entrance.

Has Uttarakhand faced similar incidents before?

Yes, in January, Uttarakhand saw another distressing event when a temple collapsed, and cracks appeared in hundreds of houses due to land subsidence in and around Joshimath town in the region.

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