Vertical drilling from above the Silkyara-Barkot tunnel has been carried out as much as 31 metres, former DG of Border Roads Organisation Harpal Singh stated on Monday on the website of the rescue operation.
“There is no other way left except the manual method and this is also the safe one through which we can reach the labourers. In the current situation, the Auger machine that was stuck has been removed. Efforts are underway to remove the 1.5 meters of the damaged pipe. After its removal, strengthening and muck clearance, skilled labourers will go in with the help of the army. We hope this will be done soon,” he stated.
A complete of 86 metres needs to be drilled vertically to organize an escape passage for the 41 employees trapped for the final 15 days. Pipes of 1.2 metres in diameter should be laid vertically by the highest of the tunnel by this technique adopted as a second choice.
Preparations are additionally underway to begin horizontal drilling inside the primary tunnel manually, he stated. Rescuers must manually dig 10 to 12 metres by the rubble after the auger machine broke down.
Singh stated that he reached the positioning to offer technical inputs and additional help the continued rescue operations. He added that efforts are made on all fronts to hurry up the rescue course of.
“I have come here to provide technical inputs and participate in further rescue operations. The work which is being done through the pipeline from below and also the work which is being done through vertical drilling from above which has been done around 31 meters, efforts are being made through both the routes,” he stated.
Talking additional on the handbook drilling to be undertaken, he stated, “We are here to assist, the operations are carried out by the Army and also other agencies. We all are working together. The works are done under the leadership of the Secretary of the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways (MoRTH).”
“The Engineers Regiment of the Army has made a manual drift and along with them the people of the Engineer Regiment will work on laying the last 10-12 metre pipeline,” he added.
The auger drill — a corkscrew-like machine with a rotary blade on the entrance finish — that was drilling into the particles received caught Friday night, forcing officers to surrender on the 25-tonne machine.
With inputs from businesses.