Tags: chile | mine | collapse | investigation

Chile Mine Collapse Investigation Ends Without Charges

By    |   Friday, 02 August 2013 11:32 AM

An investigation into the August 2010 Chilean mine collapse that trapped 33 miners underground for nearly 12 weeks, turning them into international celebrities, has ended without blaming any party for the accident, public prosecutor Hector Mella said.

Mella said there was not enough evidence to determine the cause of the accident or to charge the mine owners or government mining agency officials in charge of enforcing safety standards with criminal responsibility in connection with the collapse, the New York Times reported.

The prosecutor’s findings appeared to contradict those of a congressional investigative panel which said in 2011 that the mine owners “could have avoided” the collapse and that the government mining agency failed to supervise mining operations and enforce its own decisions.

The prosecutor’s investigation was opened days after the 120-year-old copper mine, located 500 miles north of Santiago, caved in on Aug. 5, 2010, trapping the men below ground. The Chilean government launched a large-scale rescue effort that included bringing in experts from a dozen countries and bringing in huge drills in an effort to reach the miners.

Once all 33 miners were found alive more than two weeks later, a team that included NASA specialists, doctors, and nutritionists kept them supplied with water, food, other items, and messages through ducts drilled through the rock. Improvised telephone and videoconference systems were set up to connect the miners with their families.

Well before their rescue on Oct. 13, 2010, the miners became internationally famous as symbols of hope and survival.

Mario Sepulveda, one of the 33 rescued miners, blasted the prosecutors’ investigation, according to the Times.

He said mine owners Alejandro Bohn and Marcelo Kemeny are “free and happy going about with their lives, even though they left us buried underground.”

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An investigation into the August 2010 Chilean mine collapse that trapped 33 miners underground for nearly 12 weeks, turning them into international celebrities, has ended without blaming any party for the accident, public prosecutor Hector Mella said.
chile,mine,collapse,investigation
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2013-32-02
Friday, 02 August 2013 11:32 AM
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