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Day after Mexico mine collapse, families fret over 10 trapped miners

By Lizbeth Diaz

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -Families grew increasingly anxious on Thursday because they awaited word from rescue teams tasked with descending a flooded coal mine in northern Mexico to rescue 10 workers nearly 24 hours after a major accident confined the crew deep underground.

The miners became trapped on Wednesday after their excavation work caused a tunnel wall to collapse, triggering flooding in three wells.

Erika Escobedo, the wife of 1 of the trapped miners, 29-year-old Hugo Tijerina, told Reuters she spent forever watching rescue efforts at the website in the northern border state of Coahuila.

They state the water is rising, she said, describing bigger water extraction pumps she saw hauled to the website.

Mexicos Civil Protection agency didn’t immediately respond when asked about efforts to generate the water, and when levels were rising.

Its director, Laura Velazquez, said previously Thursday that point was everything, and many hundred officials were morning and night to aid with the rescue.

Six divers from the Mexican Special Forces attained the website on Thursday morning to greatly help the rescue effort alongside search dogs, in accordance with Agustin Radilla, a high military official. The mines wells, each 60 meters deep, were over fifty percent flooded, Radilla added.

Families keeping vigil remained on edge.

I’d like my husband ahead out fine, said Escobedo, her voice breaking in a phone interview from the website, as she watched rescuers bore another tunnel to attempt to reach the miners.

For the present time, she has informed her three children never to be worried about their father and he should come home okay.

Five other miners escaped the accident. Each of them received treatment, and two have already been discharged from hospital.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said investigations into those in charge of the mines safety should come only following the rescue effort.

With all my soul, I’d like us to rescue the miners, he said at a news conference. The mine opened in January and had no record of complaints for just about any kind of abnormality, the Labor Ministry reported yesterday.

Still Elizabeth Vielma, mom of three men who just work at the website but weren’t involved with Wednesdays accident, said she concerned about conditions there.

They just provide them with the drills and send them down, she said.

(Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz; Writing by Kylie Madry and Daina Beth Solomon; Editing by Barbara Lewis and Marla Dickerson)

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