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Home World News Washington Post World News S Korea miners lived on coffee, water while trapped in the shaft

S Korea miners lived on coffee, water while trapped in the shaft

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SEOUL, South Korea — Two South Korean miners rescued after being trapped underground for nine days said they lived on instant coffee powder and water falling from the ceiling of a collapsed shaft.

The two men, aged 62 and 56, were rescued Friday night from a collapsed zinc mine shaft in the southeastern city of Bonghwa. They were stranded there after a pile of dirt fell into the shaft on October 26.

Bang Jong-hyo, a doctor who treated the miners at a local hospital, told reporters on Saturday that both men were in fairly good condition, although they initially said they suffered from hypothermia and muscle aches. He said the two were expected to be released from the hospital within days.

Bang said the two miners told him they shared 30 sticks of instant coffee while trapped underground.

The two also drank water that ran into the shaft and set a fire to survive, the South Korean emergency service said in a statement. Local media said the water fell from the shaft cell.

President Yoon Suk Yeol called their rescue “miraculous” and “moving.”

Yoon sent a senior presidential official to the miners to deliver letters wishing their speedy recovery and unspecified gifts.

The letters quoted Yoon as saying the miners have “gave new hope to the Republic of South Korea, which has been stricken with grief,” his office said Sunday, in clear reference to a harrowing Halloween influx of crowds in Seoul who took life. 156 people last weekend.



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