Fresh cave-in complicates effort to rescue trapped miners in Peru

Workers walk toward the entrance of a mine east of Ica, Peru, on Friday in an attempt to rescue nine trapped miners.

Story highlights

  • The government appeals to mining companies for help
  • Official reportedly cites an engineer saying the rescue could take another day or two
  • Nine miners have been trapped since Thursday
  • In 2010, 33 miners were rescued after being trapped underground for 69 days in Chile

A cave-in complicated work in southern Peru to rescue nine miners who have been trapped below ground for days, state media reported Sunday.

The miners have been stuck since Thursday in the wildcat Cabeza de Negro mine.

"It's very complicated work. We're taking into account all the necessary security measures to avoid risks among the rescuers themselves," said Cesar Chonate, a regional head of Peru's civil defense agency, the state-run Andina news agency reported.

Video from state-run TV Peru showed workers, wearing hard hats and headlamps, loading rocks into a pushcart by hand.

It was not clear what caused the initial collapse.

Perú: Rescate de mineros
Perú: Rescate de mineros

    JUST WATCHED

    Perú: Rescate de mineros

MUST WATCH

Perú: Rescate de mineros 01:02
PLAY VIDEO

The miners have been getting oxygen, food and water through a tube, which has also allowed them to stay in contact with people above ground, Andina reported.

Peru's Cabinet chief was in the area Sunday and spoke to reporters about the ongoing effort.

"We want the rescue to happen as soon as possible, but the engineer in charge said it could be another day or two," said Oscar Valdes, according to Andina.

Peruvian Mining Minister Jorge Merino was also in the area and appealed to mining companies for their expertise, according to a statement from his office.

Mining is big business in Peru, which is a major world producer of copper, silver, gold and other minerals.

"The important thing is that the nine people are alive. We won't abandon them," Merino said.

The ordeal stirred memories of the 2010 Chilean mine collapse, in which 33 men were trapped underground for 69 days. All of those miners were rescued, pulled one by one from hundreds of meters beneath the earth's surface with a specially designed capsule.

      CNN recommends

    • pkg clancy north korea nuclear dreams_00002004.jpg

      North Korea nuclear dream video

      As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
    • Photos: Faces of the world

      Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
    • pkg rivers uk football match fixing_00005026.jpg

      How to fix a soccer match

      Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
    • No Eiffel Towers, Statues of Liberties, Mt. Rushmores, Taj Mahals, Aussie koalas or Chairman Maos.

      15 biggest souvenir-buying no-no's

      It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.