Rescuers Start Bringing Up Dozens Of Trapped Illegal Miners In South Africa

A rescue operation is underway to free trapped illegal miners near Johannesburg, South Africa, but some are remaining underground to avoid arrest. This story is developing.

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South African rescuers started bringing to the surface a group of illegal miners this morning who were trapped in an abandoned gold shaft near Johannesburg for at least two days, an emergency services spokesman told Reuters.

"Twelve have been rescued so far," Werner Vermaak, a South African Emergency Medical Service spokesman said, noting that others in the group were on their way to safety.

The mine was in an open, public field and police allegedly began investigating the incident after a police patrol heard shouts.

Aerial footage of mine rescue in #Benoni

A rescued miner told officials that 200 more diggers were deeper in the mine, and the exact number remains unknown.

200 miners trapped “@ER24EMS: More rescue teams arrive... for illegal miners incident. Still trapped underground. ”

Rohit Kachroo@RohitKachrooITV

200 miners trapped “@ER24EMS: More rescue teams arrive... for illegal miners incident. Still trapped underground. ”

06:16 AM - 16 Feb 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Eleven miners pulled out so far. Paramedics say that one miner is reluctant to emerge from the mine - he's worried he'll be arrested

Rohit Kachroo@RohitKachrooITV

Eleven miners pulled out so far. Paramedics say that one miner is reluctant to emerge from the mine - he's worried he'll be arrested

11:03 AM - 16 Feb 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

The miners were first checked by medics, and then handed over to the police for questioning.

Straight from medical bus to police van. #Benoni illegal miners

ER24 EMS (Pty) Ltd ®@ER24EMS

Straight from medical bus to police van. #Benoni illegal miners

11:00 AM - 16 Feb 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

At of 1:39 p.m. rescue operations were stopped and the case was handed over to the police.

All Rescue operations have stopped and the crime scene has been handed over the SAPS and Gold One mine security. #Benoni @ER24EMS

ER24JHBEast@ER24JHBEast

All Rescue operations have stopped and the crime scene has been handed over the SAPS and Gold One mine security. #Benoni @ER24EMS

01:39 PM - 16 Feb 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Check back for more details as this story develops.

First two miners rescued so far. ER24 on scene ready to treat the injured.

ER24 EMS (Pty) Ltd ®@ER24EMS

First two miners rescued so far. ER24 on scene ready to treat the injured.

10:40 AM - 16 Feb 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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