In a mountainous region of Uttarakhand, India, an under-construction road tunnel experienced a collapse after a landslide on Sunday, trapping over 30 workers. The incident occurred approximately 200 meters from the tunnel entrance, prompting a large-scale rescue operation involving federal and state disaster relief agencies.
Uttarakhand, largely known especially among tourists for its Hindu temples is a popular destination for both travellers and tourists over the years. With this, the area has witnessed several construction project in order to accommodate to the large influx of visitors, however, disaster has struck during the latest construction project as the tunnel that the construction workers were in collapsed, with rescue efforts having faced major challenges over the past ten days, leading to around 41 construction workers still being trapped in the tunnel.
The rescue operations have been underway since the collapse, with 160 personnels employing drilling equipments as well as excavators to rescue the trapped workers. However, the rescue efforts have faced several challenges as the initial attempts to drill horizontally were hundred by the breakdown of the drilling machine as well as the risk of the debris falling, which caused concern that more damage could be posed to the workers during the initial rescue plans.
While officials have shiften to an alternate plan, involving the creation of an access road to the top of the hill for vertical digging, the rescue team has also been supplying the trapped workers with oxygen through a pipe to aid with the breathing, supplying hot meals such as rice and lentils in the most recent development in the rescue efforts.
Prior to this, the workers have relied on dry food sent through the narrow pipe used to send oxygen for over a week, however, rescue efforts are looking slightly more positive as the team is finally able to supply the trapped workers with actual meals instead.
While it is still unclear what caused the collapse to happen in the first place, the rescue efforts are looking more positive by the day. With the team on the ground stating that it will take a few days to carry out the alternative rescue mission, families of those trapped grow increasingly anxious as this rescue mission is a race against time as 41 men are trapped in this confined space.