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Buried Tassie miners fight to survive

THE Beaconsfield Gold Mine in Tasmania was the dramatic scene of a rock collapse on Anzac Day, leaving one man dead and two miners trapped alive in a steel cage almost a kilometre underground. Survivors Todd Russell, 34, and Brant Webb, 37, have managed to get some food and water through a 10cm-wide PVC tube inserted into a hole drilled by rescuers. Australian Workers Union national secretary Bill Shorten said there was still a risk of another rock collapse and rescuers were mining by hand as well as using very small explosive charges to make progress. To reach the site of the collapse, rescuers must take a lift down to 375 metres before driving down a 375m corkscrew to a level of 925m. The town of Beaconsfield, 40km from Launceston, is built around the mine shaft and locals are keeping vigil.

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