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> Issue 62 > Page 12 - Cape Breton Dragerman at Westray: George Muise, New Waterford

Page 12 - Cape Breton Dragerman at Westray: George Muise, New Waterford

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1993/1/1 (292 reads)

hand signals and some whispers. As we sat there, like I say, the roof continued to collapse. Half a ton or a ton of material would come down at a time. The difficult part was that we as captains knew that we were going to have to take our teams through that area once the material came. And we also had to deal with the fact that the methane level may increase in the north mains, and possibly be ignited by the fire that was still burning. It took about two hours to get material from the surface. Nothing elaborate was available. We had light plastic buckets-- 5-gallon buckets. We walked back to the area where the level was flooded. We filled the buckets with the water at that point. We continued to divide five buckets of water, a couple bags of stone dust, some shovels and some picks among the team members. And we travelled over the fall area one at a time. I went first. And after enough space, an? other man came behind me. We knew that we couldn't bunch together, because if the roof did come in, the chances of it hitting one person was less than if we were bunched together. We managed to get over the fall safely. We brought the material down through the hole. This hole was very small. It was only just enough room for a man and his machine to squeeze down through. We carried the material in over the second fall down to where the fire was at. We oo- SUPERIOR LIMITED COMPLETE OPTICAL SERVICE Owned & Operated JAMES DEAN Optician Shirley Sparling Optician I Moii> -> Tuea. - Sat. 10 am - 6 pm; Wed. ' Thurs> ' Fri. 10 am - 9 pm I S64-8486 Mayflower Mail Country • Bluegrass • Rock • Folk Fiddle and Newfoundland Music Largest Atlantic Region Music selection in Eastern Canada. Tap your toe to Cape Breton & Newfoundland Fiddle, Accordion & Folk Music, & "Down East" Presentations. Write or ask for our list of Newfoundland & Maritime Music. ~ Available by Mail Order ~ 2 miles south of CHETICAMP, on the Cabot Trail P.O.Box 516, Cheticamp, NS BOE 1H0 • Ph: (902)224-3782 used the water to cool down the area. We then used stone dust to cover the area, smother the area of oxygen so it wouldn't re-ignite. When we thought it was safe to continue on, the two teams split up. Glenn Jones went down to the north mains. Number 1 road. And we proceeded to check out Num? ber 2 and Number 3 north main roads. Not far down Number 2 mains, there was an? other fall there which completely closed off Number 2. We retreated and went back up to Number 3. Again, Number 3 was completely blocked off. We decided to go up and join Glenn in Number 1 mains, hoping that he had better luck. Upon reaching the top of Num? ber 3 tunnel, Glenn was there waiting. We had to travel about 200 feet on top of the debris, which is about 50 or 60 feet high. The debris was piled close to the roof, which meant that we had to crawl on our bellies to go up over this fall at the starting point. Once up through there, the roof was about 60 feet high. The roof didn't look good. It was completely unsup? ported. We had to travel about 200 feet into this tunnel which was exactly on top of the main tunnel, into another hole. We crawled down in through the hole, using the ladder again, which put us underneath the roof supports at that time. We were able to travel underneath the roof sup? ports for about maybe 50 feet, and again we had to climb back up on top of the fall in order to get into the north mains. This section had been sealed off for roughly 6 days. The air in here was very hot; it was roughly around 120?. The way to the southeast was quite long in that there were so many falls that we had to take so many detours through the mine. We actually went down into the deepest parts of the mine, and back up at some points, and then back down, and back up. This area was the worst, as far as roof collapse, that we had seen. Again, we had to crawl on our hands and knees and on our bellies, and actually wedge ourselves between the loose material that was falling and the roof that was still there. And try to dig at the stone, the wooden supports, metal CO-OP ' Burner Service Contracts Available Automatic Delivery Budget Plan Available Lube - Oil - Greases 562-3163 503 PRINCE ST. - SYDNEY, N. S. CO-OP FUELS Stove and Furnace Oil Furnace Maintenance Contracts Available
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