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Uttarkashi tunnel collapse: Senior official anticipates 'big news tonight, tomorrow'

Ahmed detailed the progress, mentioning the insertion of an 800mm pipe after drilling 39 meters into the debris. He highlighted the horizontal drilling from Barkot's side, reaching depths of 7.9 meters.

Uttarkashi tunnel collapse: Senior official anticipates 'big news tonight, tomorrow' AJR
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First Published Nov 22, 2023, 3:40 PM IST

Rescuers engaged in the painstaking effort to free 41 workers trapped in the partially collapsed tunnel in Uttarakhand's Uttarkashi anticipate significant developments within the next 24 hours, according to a senior official's statement on Wednesday.

Mahmood Ahmed, the Additional Secretary Technical of Road and Transport, expressed hope as an additional 880-millimeter pipe had been successfully inserted several meters into the debris. They've made progress by drilling and inserting three pipes, marking achievements in their ongoing efforts.

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Ahmed detailed the progress, mentioning the insertion of an 800mm pipe after drilling 39 meters into the debris. He highlighted the horizontal drilling from Barkot's side, reaching depths of 7.9 meters. However, providing an exact timeframe for the rescue remains uncertain until authorities can reach 45-50 meters inside the tunnel.

He expressed cautious optimism, stating that if no obstacles arise, there's a possibility of significant developments either by tonight or tomorrow morning. Amid the rescue operations, an iron rod emerged with the debris, fortunately without hindering their efforts.

A consortium of five public sector agencies, including ONGC, SJVNL, RVNL, NHIDCL, and THDCL, has been tirelessly working to extract the trapped workers. The tunnel's collapse occurred on November 12, prompting a continuous rescue operation that reached a milestone when an endoscopy camera provided the first visuals of the trapped workers on Tuesday.

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