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New video emerges of Chilean miners

Thursday, August 04, 2011 - 01:43

Aug. 3 - New video emerges documenting the ordeal of 33 Chilean miners stranded 2,050 feet below the surface of the earth last year. The new images come as the miners prepare to mark the one year anniversary of the accident. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: The Chilean government released never-before seen video of the 33 trapped miners who miraculously survived more than two months 2,050 feet (625 metres) under ground before safely emerging as millions watched and cheered for them around the globe. When the mine caved, nearly one year ago, on August 5, 2010 the men were all thought to be dead. But rescuers found them 17 days later with a bore hole the width of a grapefruit. That tiny hole became an umbilical cord used to pass hydration gels, water and food to keep them alive until a bigger space could be bored to bring them up. Video images of the men took their plight into households around the globe. The latest video was mostly filmed by one of the miners, Mario Sepulveda, after rescuers from the surface sent a camera down the narrow hole. The extraordinary images show smiling miners as they open capsules filled with supplies and letters that were sent from loved ones at the surface along with food and water. Other images showed a miner who had fallen ill while trapped until they were finally hoisted to safety more than two months later on October 13. Sepulveda came to be known as the "presenter" as he manned the camera and made commentary as he filmed his coworkers as they prepared meals, slept, passed the time and worked for their own rescue along with rescue workers at the mine head. In a recent television interview Sepulveda said the miners came together while they waited and worked for their rescue. "When someone needed something we were all there to help him, together," Sepulveda said. When they finally did emerge, with much of the world transfixed on TV, the miners, who set a world record for survival underground, were welcomed as national heroes outside the San Jose gold and copper mine in the Atacama Desert. "There was a critical moment, but we started to know each other, love each other and be good friends," miner Omar Reygadas said of their time below together. The evacuation process -- via a metal capsule named Phoenix after the mythical bird that rose from the ashes -- went quicker and more smoothly than anyone dared to believe, swelling Chileans' pride at the rescue. The miners were generally in good health, except for one who had pneumonia. With their survival story captured and broadcast by 1,500 journalists camped at the remote scene the 33 men, unknown workers before the mine collapse, were promised fame and fortune that never really materialized though a Hollywood film is still said to be in the works.

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New video emerges of Chilean miners

Thursday, August 04, 2011 - 01:43