Frustrations Growing at Crandall Canyon

By: Paula Haddock, ABC News
By: Paula Haddock, ABC News

The mood at the Crandall Canyon Mine in Utah continues to be tense and both rescue workers and loved ones are growing frustrated by the situation there .

Progress is again being made in the efforts to rescue six miners trapped in a Utah coal mine. The mine's owner said one of the two holes being drilled into the mountainside, the smaller two-inch hole, intended to provide fresh air, has made it down 450-ft., a third of the way to the miners.

"It will provide food. It will provide all the needs of the miners if they are alive," said Robert Murray, President of the Murray Energy Corp.

Crews began drilling the larger 8/12 in. pathway on Aug. 8.

"Once we drill the holes, they can survive underground indefinitely--we can provide everything they need including a toothbrush and a comb, until underground effort gets to them," Murray added.

The underground effort was halted Aug. 7 because seismic activity made the mine too unstable for rescue workers. But reinforcements like timber and gravel are being trucked in to help stabilize things and crews may go back underground soon.

"I am pleased to say the seismic activity has subsided and we are well underway in our underground operations," Murray explained.

Robert Murray was glad to share the progress report with the miner's families but admits the slow rescue attempt is taking its toll.

"They're getting more and more concerned, and some are getting distraught," Murray admitted.

One of the Murray Energy Corporation's companies is Kenamerica, which ran Paradise Mine in Muhlenberg County.


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