Chilean Miners’ Evacuation Process Begins

By Swatilekha Paul, Gaea News Network
Wednesday, October 13, 2010

SAN JOSE MINE, CHILE ( The record-breaking two month old drama finally reached its climax on Wednesday when Florencio Avalos, one of the Chilean miners who had been trapped in the San Jose mine in Chile for the past ten weeks was rescued by the emergency officials. A thundering applause greeted the 33-year-old miner as he was escorted to the surface with the help of an escape shaft wearing sunglasses and a helmet to protect his eyes from the bright lights of the San Jose mine after spending around 69 days about 700 meters under the surface of the Earth.

Following the successful rescue of the first of the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped in the underground mine, Florencio Avalos went on to embrace Chilean President Sebastian Pinera and the other onlookers who were present at the site. This was surely an extremely emotional moment for the family members of the 33-year-old miner who sobbed uncontrollably after catching the first glimpse of Florencio Avalos when he emerged safely from the Phoenix capsule, 54-cm-wide tube that has been built by the Chilean army to rescue the trapped miners. Just prior to Florencio Avalos’ rescue, rescuer Manuel Gonzalez descended down the underground chamber to meet the trapped miners for the first time since they were stuck in the mine.

In the upcoming days, all the other Chilean miners who are still trapped in the San Jose copper and gold mine are expected to be brought to safety. The rescue of Florencio Avalos marks the culmination of the record-breaking ordeal of the miners who have been awaiting rescue since they were trapped in the mine on August 5.

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