Search continues for Lindener at BOSAI mines – Min. Hamilton

Exercise temporarily suspended Saturday evening due to safety concerns

Minister of Labour, Joseph Hamilton on Sunday updated the nation on the status of the search and rescue operation that has been ongoing for Neptrid Hercules, a resident of Region Ten who works at the BOSAI mines.

Hercules and the bulldozer he was operating went missing around 4:00 am Saturday, which immediately prompted a search and rescue effort coordinated by the Occupational Safety and Health Unit of the Ministry of Labour, the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), and the safety department at BOSAI.

In an interview with the Department of Public Information (DPI), the minister related that late Saturday evening the personnel on the ground decided to temporarily suspend the operation due to safety concerns for the team. The exercise resumed early Sunday morning.

“So the safety issue was the important issue because the worst thing we can want to happen is that we end up with more people underground and so all the technical people that are there consulted and took into consideration the safety of everyone.

“This was not a willy-nilly suspension, these are technical people who are sound … they consulted and made a determination that it might be useful and better that we return in bright daylight to do this,” Minister Hamilton related.

Minister of Labour, Joseph Hamilton during the interview on Sunday

Minister Hamilton also explained, “You have what can be considered deep valleys and you have high hill sides, so excavation was not yielding the type of fruits, so yesterday they brought in a metal detector to see if perhaps that would help them to pinpoint where the bulldozer is. Up to last evening when they suspended and up to this moment, they have been unsuccessful so they continue to excavate areas.”

The minister assured that the search for Mr Hercules would continue.

“Somebody might argue that you can bring in floodlights, it’s not just the lighting, it is the ground itself that you are operating on and so they make that decision and so it was just a suspension of the search” he reiterated.

According to reports, while Mr Hercules was operating the bulldozer, a wall of earth broke away and quicksand covered him and the machine. Minister Hamilton said as more information becomes available, the public would be informed of the status of the operation.