The Chilean Miners’ Drama Approaches the Essential Moment

     I reported on August 30, 2010, about the unfolding drama in Chile where 33 miners thought lost in a mine collapse over 700 meters underground at the San Jose Mine in Chile were discovered trapped but alive. The amazing story of their survival and perseverance is about to reach the moment of truth as rescue efforts are approaching critical drilling depth for rescue from three directions. There has been little recent information regarding the health and mental stability of the minors, but the rescue efforts have been historic and the hope is the longest known underground human survival saga may soon reach a successful climax. Two Chilean and one Canadian mining rig are pounding through bedrock in order to create a rescue tunnel through which a rescue cage may be lowered over two thousand feet and pull the miners out one by one.

The extent of this rescue effort and the scale of the human heroism being displayed knows little comparison. The lessons learned by so many sciences with this effort – rapid deep rock drilling, isolation psychology, group leadership, effects of extended claustrophobia, lack of light, and sleep wake cycles in a non-structured test environment are all at unforeseen levels of experience. The trial of these miners could easily help us to understand the effects of deep space travel and many other considerations only hinted at experimentally.
We can only hope and pray that the end process is a successful escape for these brave, tortured men, who lived their lives to bring food to the table of their families, but may soon provide us all with profound food for thought.

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