Besides continuing with the permanent pumping of water, the rescue strategy plans to inject cement to create a barrier that prevents the passage of water between mines.
On Monday, the administration of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) announced a new plan to save 10 miners who were trapped in the Sabinas mine in the state of Coahuila after a flood that took place on August 3.
"After reducing the water levels of the Pinabete coal mine, which was flooded after the collapse of a wall in the neighboring Conchas Norte mine, the rescuers were preparing to enter this Sunday, but a new flood occurred," Civil Protection Coordinator Laura Velazquez said.
The new plan contemplates continuing with the permanent pumping of water, identifying areas with empty spaces, drilling 20 6-inch holes to a depth of 60 meters in the abandoned Conchas Norte mine, and injecting cement to create a barrier that prevents the passage of water between the mines.
“We were doing well. Unfortunately the mine collapsed even more, especially a water hole in the neighboring abandoned mine, which is the one that accumulates the most water, widened. The volumes of water increased again when we had already reduced the water in the coal mine where miners are trapped," President AMLO said.
The Mexican government, which has deployed over 600 elements of the Armed Forces and civilians in the area, has pumped more than 249,000 cubic meters of water to enter the workers trapped in the Pinabete mine, but discovered that the abandoned Conchas Norte mine has an accumulation 1.9 million cubic meters of water.
"I have given instructions to reinforce the rescue plan. We are pumping around 290 liters per second and we are going to increase pumping. Mining engineers are making a proposal to build a kind of barrier from one mine to the other," AMLO explained.
The collapse has reactivated the controversy in Mexico over the actions of mining companies in the coal region, where over 100 deaths of workers have been recorded, according to the Pasta de Conchos Family, which brings together relatives of those killed in the 2006 collapse at the mine of that name.