Sixteen divers from the Ministry of Energy's militarised unit flew to Rostov-on-Don (the Southern federal district) to help rescue workers at the Zapadnaya mine, a representative of the Energy Ministry told RIA Novosti.
First Deputy Minister of Energy Leonid Tropko and Energy Ministry coal industry department chief Vladimir Artemeyev also flew to Rostov to organize and coordinate the rescue mission, according to a representative of the Energy Ministry. Vladimir Artemeyev has worked in the Rostovugol system before.
"The first task is to organize the rescuing. No other tasks are set at the moment," the Energy Ministry representative said.
As many as 46 miners are trapped in the Zapadnaya-Kapitalnaya mine at a depth of 800 meters because of a breakthrough of subterranean water.
The Ministry officials said that the rescue workers plan to create passages to the mine from two sides - from the Komsomolskaya Pravda mine and the Lenin mine. The openings cannot be smaller than 2-2.5 square meters.
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