SANTIAGO – The families of 27 of the 33 miners trapped since Aug. 5 inside a mine in northern Chile plan to sue the mine’s owners and the Chilean government for $27 million.
The suit is to be filed Thursday with a court in Copiapo, the nearest city to the San Jose mine.
“The amount ought to reach, as has happened in others countries, at least a million dollars per worker, that is: a total of $27 million, though it could be more,” the mayor of the town of Caldera, Brunilda Gonzalez, told Radio Cooperativa.
Besides the San Esteban firm that owns the mine, the suit targets individual officials who failed to enforce safety regulations and the Chilean state, she said.
“The courts will determine how to divide it, who pays and who is made responsible,” Gonzalez said.
Rescuers effort now say they may reach the miners, who are trapped 700 meters (2,295 feet) underground, by late October.
Authorities released on Wednesday a new video in which the miners are seen clearing away rubble generated by one of the three giant drills boring toward the chamber where the 33 men are holed up.
Working in three shifts, the trapped miners are removing roughly eight tons a day of debris, rescue supervisor Andre Sougarret told Radio Cooperativa. EFE