'Hope waning' for trapped Turkish miners

'Hope waning' for trapped Turkish miners

Hope waning for trapped Turkish miners

AA Photo

Hope has been all but extinguished for 18 Turkish miners trapped by a flood in a mine in the south of the country amid several accusations of severe negligence that permitted water to flow into an underground gallery.

However, the firm that operates the mine in Karaman province has attempted to absolve itself of responsibility in the incident, saying it seemed “to be a natural disaster” rather than caused by any negligence.

“Time is ticking by. I have to tell you that hope is waning concerning our 18 worker brothers,” Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said on Oct. 30. The minister was at the scene of the disaster in Karaman as rescue efforts entered a third day.

“It is not just because of the water. It is because of the tons of mud and waste that have crashed down into the pits,” he added in televised comments.

Rescue workers have been seeking to reduce the water levels by pumping out the water with a gigantic pipe. The disaster took place when a build-up of water caused the walls of the shaft to collapse, but officials have been unable to explain what caused the accumulation of water.

The company which operates the mine in Karaman’s Emenek district said in a statement that the incident seemed to be a result of a natural disaster.

“All workplace security measures are taken and, all workplace security inspections are done in our mine and it is operated in line with the law,” said the Has Şekerler Mining company in a statement.

“It is impossible to determine how the accident took place now, although the existence of a natural disaster is being told by the miners who were rescued from the mine,” said the company, explaining the reason for the flow of water.