By Vanessa Buschschlüter
Relatives of 10 miners trapped in a flooded coalmine in Mexico’s Coahuila state are growing increasingly desperate after efforts to free them dragged into another day.
The miners were trapped on Wednesday last week when a wall in a tunnel collapsed and water from the adjacent chamber gushed into three shafts.
The flooding has made it too dangerous for rescuers to enter.
Almost 400 people are now on site working on freeing the miners.
On Sunday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador visited the mine and called for efforts to save the men to be stepped up.
“We have to do everything we are doing, and more,” the president said.
Tempers frayed during the president’s visit to the site, with some relatives trying to push past security to continue talking to the leader.
However, the authorities say it is too dangerous to send in anyone while the water levels inside the shafts are still very high.
The governor of Coahuila state, Miguel Ángel Riquelme, said that he hoped that the trapped miners had managed to retreat further into the mine, where there may be an “air bubble”.
He added that water was being pumped from the flooded shafts at a speed of 350 litres a second and that the levels were going down.
According to a joint statement by the president and the governor, the authorities were “analysing the possibility” that the specialised rescue divers could enter the mine.