New Zealand miners: Rescue operations underway

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Wellington, Nov 20: Rescue operations to save the trapped 29 miners in New Zealand mine were delayed by the high level of gas inside the mine.

Rescue operators said that the gas levels inside the mine are still too high to attempt a rescue.

"Air samples taken late Saturday, Nov 20 afternoon indicated the gas levels inside the Pike River mine were still high, making the risk for rescuers too great," said Gary Knowles, superintendent of the Tasman Police District, who is heading the rescue effort.

New Zeland authority revealed the nationality of trapped miners. There are two Australians, two Britons, one South African and the remaining 24 New Zealanders.

Earlier on Friday, Nov 19, two miners managed to escape from the mine and were admitted to hospital.

An explosion at a remote coal mine on New Zealand's South Island trapped the 29 miners on Friday, Nov 19 evening. Authorities are still unaware about the cause of the explosion at the mine.

New Zealand mine explosion incident happened just five weeks after 33 trapped miners were freed from a Chilean mine after more than two months underground.

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