As the challenging rescue operation in Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand, reaches its seventh day, a renewed sense of hope emerges with the arrival of a new drilling machine at the site. The operation faced a temporary setback on Friday when loud cracking sounds echoed inside the collapsed tunnel, coupled with a glitch in the existing drilling machine, bringing the efforts to a brief halt.
To overcome this obstacle, a state-of-the-art drilling machine was airlifted from Indore, Madhya Pradesh, to the rescue site on Saturday. However, deployment of the new machine awaits the removal of the defective one currently inside the tunnel.
On November 18, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) updated the list of trapped individuals from 40 to 41, assuring the public that everyone inside the tunnel was safe. Despite the optimistic update, the rescue operation has faced challenges, primarily attributed to the technical glitch in the drilling machine and the complex nature of the debris.
Reports indicate that the rescuers are adopting a meticulous approach, planning to push the drill through 65-70 meters of debris. They aim to create a passage by inserting two pipes of 800 mm and 900 mm consecutively, offering a pathway through which the trapped workers can crawl to safety.
The slow pace of the rescue operation is a consequence of the technical challenges encountered on the ground. However, the arrival of the new drilling machine signals a renewed effort to expedite the process and bring relief to the 41 workers who have been trapped inside the tunnel for an extended period.
As the rescuers navigate the intricacies of the operation, the collective hope remains for a successful extraction of the trapped individuals, emphasizing the resilience and determination of the rescue teams involved.