Rescue Of Chilean Miners To Begin Wednesday

Illustration for article titled Rescue Of Chilean Miners To Begin Wednesday

After the drill reached the trapped Chilean miners, work began on fortifying the rescue shaft with steel. With that almost done, officials are now saying that the miners will be pulled out on Wednesday in a 48-hour effort.

There was discussion on whether to line the entire rescue shaft with steel, part of the rescue shaft or even none of it. After inspecting the shaft with video, officials decided that only the first 315 feet (96m) needed to be reinforced with steel, the lower portion of the shaft is rock solid. How will they line the tunnel?

The plan is to insert 16 sections of half-inch(1.27 centimeter)-thick steel pipe into the top of the hole, which curves like a waterfall at first before becoming nearly vertical for most of its descent into a chamber deep in the mine.

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If they had decided to line the entire shaft, it'd take an extra week to start the rescue effort. Hopefully, with the method they chose everything still works out. The rescue effort begins Wednesday and should last 48 hours to rescue all 33 miners. [SF Gate]

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DISCUSSION

I've been watching this story for many weeks. What I have found so heartening is that they are all arguing over who should go last... not because the last guy is the bad guy, but because none of them wants to be the first guy to go... none of them wants to go ahead of their brother. They are all brothers, down there. They have become brothers. In our hearts, we know this.

Finally, in these days near the end, they realize that it is the noblest among them that wants to go last. At the name time, it is the bravest among them that wants to go first.

They are fighting not with each other, but to separate the brave from the noble, and to not have any disagreement between these brothers (or hurt feelings) when they are all a half-mile up on the ground. These guys are extraordinary men. I'm awed by them. I want to see them all back in the air, where I can share it with them.