A week after smashing a glacier in the Himalayas, rescue workers recovered nine more bodies. Thus the death toll from the disaster in the state of Uttarakhand rose to fifty. More than 150 people are still missing.
A wall of water flowed through a valley in the northern Himalayas in India on Sunday, destroying bridges, roads and two hydroelectric plants.
Rescue workers use heavy equipment in a race against time to free dozens of construction workers. Construction workers are trapped in an underground tunnel connected to a hydropower plant being built on behalf of the Indian government.
“We have not lost all hope yet. We hope to find more survivors,” said Swati Bhaduria, the region’s chief government official.
Rescue operations are fraught with danger due to the vast quantities of debris
According to the authorities, 154 people are still missing. Experts warn that huge amounts of rocks, debris, ice and water can decompose. This makes rescue operations risky.
Uttarakhand is prone to floods and landslides. The disaster led to calls from environmental groups to evaluate energy projects in this area. There are about ten thousand glaciers in the Indian Himalayas. Uttarakhand has 1,495 glaciers and many of them are retreating due to the warming climate.
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