Rescue efforts now wrapped up after three-day operation
39 miners have been rescued from a mine near Sudbury, Ontario.
Official sources announced on Sunday that 39 miners were trapped in Vale’s Totten Mine after a shaft was damaged around midday.
Rescue operations had been in place since Sunday, with the miners slowly being evacuated from the mine.
The last of the miners were rescued in the early hours of Wednesday, sources indicate.
Reuters reports that Vale CEO Eduardo Bartolomeo announced that an investigation would be launched into what happened.
Previously, Ontario Mine Rescue, part of Workplace Safety North (WSN), said that all 39 miners should be evacuated by noon Tuesday.
Canadian Press reports that the first of the trapped miners were freed from the mine on Monday. The workers were trapped in a number of different “refuges” between 900 and 1,200 metres underground.
As the regular exit shaft was blocked, the workers had to evacuate by climbing up a long, secondary egress ladder system. Due to the length of the ladder, this takes hours.
Workers who could not complete the climb had to be hoisted out using ropes, according to CBC.
Mining company Vale SA said in a statement earlier this week that the incident occurred after a scoop bucket that was being transported into the mine dislodged, which ended up blocking the shaft.
“There is no doubt this was and continues to be an exhausting experience. I commend them on their patience and their resolve,” said Gord Gilpin, an official with mining company Vale, in a statement.
“I also want to acknowledge the efforts of our mine rescue team and Totten responders who are working tirelessly to bring their colleagues to surface safely.”
There have so far been no reports of injured miners.
Article updated on 29/09/2021