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Last updated on August 9th, 2017 at 04:54 pm
Latest news on the rescue of Brant Webb and Todd Russell, now in their eighth day underground:
The two trapped Tasmanian miners have been given iPod music players to help them pass the time as workers wait to begin drilling their rescue tunnel.
Webb’s father has spoken of his grief over the death of miner Larry Knight, and paid tribute to union officials at the rescue site:
“You’ve got to feel for Larry Knight’s family,” Mr Webb told Today’s Karl Stefanovic.
“We’re all going to celebrate — and they are going to bury their son. I really do feel for them,” he said …
Mr Webb said the family had received tremendous support from locals and the unions, and were hoping there would be no further delays in freeing the trapped miners.
For a complete wrap-up of events to date, here’s Tony Wright’s excellent piece in the Bulletin.
UPDATE. Yesterday, the ABC’s Alison Caldwell claimed:
They are actually walking around, they’ve cut through the cage, they can walk around outside the cage.
Not so, according to Future Prime Minister™ Bill Shorten:
Mr Shorten told theage.com.au that cutting the cage would weaken it and and put the men at risk should further rock falls occur – a fact he said was well known to the miners and their families.
On Sunday night, Darren Flanagan was at home watching the mine rescue on television. Ten minutes after they announced the miners were still alive, his phone rang.
Shortly after that call, Mr Flanagan was flying out of HMAS Albatross, on a plane chartered by Beaconsfield Gold.
On his arrival at the mine, he became a member of a large team tasked with saving the miners, trapped almost one kilometre below.
Current state of things: rescuers are waiting for a concrete foundation to set so that a raise borer may commence drilling. Once underway, they’re looking at 48 hours to pierce 12 metres of rock.
UPDATE II. More trouble for Kim Beazley:
Kim Beazley dug in yesterday against claims he politicised the Tasmanian mine collapse, including from Victorian Premier Steve Bracks, who suggested the Opposition Leader was cashing in on the tragedy.