Rat-Hole Mining in Uttarkashi Tunnel Collapse

Rat-Hole Mining in Uttarkashi Tunnel Collapse mind map
2023 Uttarakhand Tunnel Collapse
Date of Incident
November 12, 2023
Silkyara-Barkot Tunnel
Uttarkashi District, Uttarakhand, India
Project Details
4.5km Under-Construction Tunnel
Part of Char Dham All-Weather Road Project
Workers Trapped
41 workers trapped
Duration of Trapping
17 days
Rescue Operation
Led by
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF)
State Disaster Response Force (SDRF)
Border Roads Organisation (BRO)
National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL)
Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP)
Rescue Techniques
Sophisticated augur machines initially
Shift to Rat-hole mining
Deployment of 12 experts
Horizontal and Vertical drilling
Clearance of Debris
Successfully cleared
Pipes laid for worker extraction
Rat-Hole Mining
Coal Extraction Method
Tunnels on hill slopes
Vertical rectangular pit
Horizontal drilling to coal seam
Narrow pits
Width around four feet
Equipment Used
Manual labor
Primitive tools like pickaxes, shovels
Expertise Required
Specialists in technique
Not typically rat-hole miners
Mining Process
Team Division
Specific tasks assigned
Drilling, collecting rubble, transport
Use of Specialist Tools
Slicing through metal barriers
Blower for oxygen/air circulation
Ban and Continuation
Banned in 2014 by NGT
Continues unregulated in Northeast India
Safety and Environmental Concerns
Lack of proper ventilation
Safety equipment absence
Structural support lacking
Accidents and fatalities
Impact on Northeast India
Child labor in Meghalaya
Past incidents of miner deaths
2018 flood trapping 15 miners
2021 flood trapping five miners

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