Video Shows Miners Escaping From Collapsed Congolese Gold Mine

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Mary Rooke Commentary and Analysis Writer
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Nine men managed to escape a Congolese gold mine after it collapsed Saturday, video footage shows.

A group of men surrounded one man who can be seen hurriedly digging with a spade on the side of the rock-laden hill that formed after a gold mine collapsed in South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to a video authenticated by Reuters.

As the rescuer digs in the rubble, a miner suddenly escapes the wreckage and slides down the hill as people cheer, the video shows. The man can be seen working feverishly, even digging with his hands to rescue the other trapped miners.

The man was able to dig nine miners out of the wreckage as spectators of the rescue celebrated, according to the video and a later report from Reuters.

The mine collapsed after heavy rain hit the South Kivu province, according to Reuters. Tunnel collapses are fairly common in the region due to a “lack of safety procedures and proper equipment” that can destabilize a site, the outlet reported. The Central African country is known for its treacherous mining conditions and the use of slavery and forced child labor. (RELATED: Search For Survivors Continues After Colombia Coal Mine Blast Kills At Least 11)

Three other artisanal gold mines located in the South Province city of Kamituga collapsed in September 2020, reportedly killing over 50 people. Kamituga mayor Alexandre Bundya said a team of rescuers with motor pumps worked to recover the bodies of the victims.

“The diggers and the transporters of the stones were swallowed up by the waters,” Bundya said, according to the Associated Press.