Trapped gold miners resurface after missing 5 days
Posted by News Express | 12 September 2016 | 1,531 times
Six illegal miners have safely resurfaced out of a disused gold mine where they had been trapped for five days with several others, police in Johannesburg said Monday.
Police spokesman Capt. Kay Makhubele told Anadolu Agency that an unknown numbers of illegal miners had been trapped since Wednesday at a disused mine in Langlaagte west of Johannesburg.
“Today six illegal miners came out of the ground and three of them ran away, while three others were taken in by police for interrogation,” he said on Monday.
Makhubele said four illegal miners were rescued Sunday but several others were still trapped underground.
He said rescue efforts had been temporarily suspended after rescue workers detected smoke coming out the mine shafts.
Makhubele also explained that around a dozen family members of the miners, who decided to go underground and search for their relatives, were also feared to be trapped.
“We appeal to family members not to go underground because it is risky and they could die there,” he told relatives who had gathered at the entrance of the mine.
However, some of the families told Anadolu Agency they were taking the risk to go underground and rescue their relatives because of what they called the slow pace of rescue workers.
“We can’t sit and wait for our relatives to die underground,” Blessing Mazibuku told Anadolu Agency.
It is illegal in South Africa to mine without a government licence or to enter an abandoned mine shaft.
Hundreds of illegal miners risk their lives daily to enter closed gold mine shafts scattered across Johannesburg, South Africa’s largest city.
The illegal miners are mainly unemployed migrants from neighbouring countries.
South Africa’s mineral resources minister Mosebenzi Zwane is expected to arrive at the scene.
•Sourced from Anadolu Agency. Photo shows illegal South African miners.
Source: News Express
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