Miners Trapped in Rescue Mission May Have Found an Air Pocket
Rescuers hoping to save 10 men buried in an Austrian mine for more than two weeks finally managed to sink a shaft yesterday into a hollow where the men may have found an air pocket.
A camera was due to be lowered 425ft down the eight-inch shaft into the cavity or "dome" to try to find out if the men were still alive.
But officials were careful not to rekindle hopes that were raised a week ago when another miner, who had been given up for dead after a huge cave- in at the pit, was pulled out unscathed after 10 days.
"We don't even know if there is an air pocket in the dome," said rescue operation spokesman Mr Alfred Zechling at the scene in the Alpine village of Lassing, south west of Vienna.
"The drill is now being hoisted. Sometime around 7pm the camera will probably be lowered into the hole."
Meanwhile a small group of German mine rescue specialists entered the magnesium silicate pit at a different point in the first attempt to inspect its depths at first hand and possibly find a short cut to the buried men. …