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In Spain, they found the body of a two-year-old boy who fell into a hundred-meter hole. The rescue operation lasted 13 days

The whole country followed the history, and in total more than 300 specialists participated in the search for the child.

Parents of the deceased boy Getty Photos

On January 26, an operation to rescue the two-year-old boy Julen Rosello, who fell into a hundred-meter mine on January 13, ended near the Spanish city of Malaga ( wrote about this in detail ). Specialists, descending for the child under the ground, found him dead.

The final days of the operation

Work on rescuing the boy from the mine began on the day of his disappearance – January 13. Experts found out that he was stuck at about 80 meters of a 100-meter pit, but because of the accumulation of soil they could not lower the camera in order to assess its condition. They also could not go down on their own, since the diameter of the mine is about 25 centimeters.

The rescuers decided to drill a tunnel parallel to the mine in order to get to the boy in a roundabout, and not directly (this threatened with an additional fall of ground). The local authorities provided a team of more than 300 specialists working in shifts, with all the necessary equipment for the operation. On January 18, rescuers said they would get to the boy within two days.

Rescue Plan Illustration El País

However, immediately after the start of work, the specialists (the El País publication described the team members as high-class professionals) encountered difficult terrain. The earth surrounding the well consists of various rocks and decomposing materials, which makes the soil unstable and creates a threat to workers. Because of this, the speed of the team slowed down a lot.

On January 24, the specialists finished drilling the mine, parallel to the one where the boy is. The diameter of the second pit is four meters – a special cell with two workers, who began work underground, was lowered into it. Their task was to manually and with the help of small charges of explosives dig a path to the boy. Due to the difficult conditions under the ground and physical exertion, eight rescuers worked in shifts, returning to the surface every 40-60 minutes.

Photo from the Rosello family archive

The length of the gap, which was required to dig up to get to the boy, was four meters. Due to the nature of the soil at the beginning, the process went slowly – for 15 hours of work, the specialists made their way only one and a half meters, and by morning of Friday (January 25) they reached 2.5 meters. “We are moving forward centimeter by centimeter. We hope to finish today, but we cannot guarantee anything because of the conditions of the area, ” said one of the workers in mid-January 25.

Hulen’s body was found on the night of January 26th. The boy showed no sign of life.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Unfortunately, at 1:25 this morning, the rescue teams reached the point in the mine, where they were looking for Hulen, and found the body of the boy. Judicial commission assembled. My condolences to the family. Rest in peace.[/perfectpullquote]
Alfonso Rodriguez Gomez de Celis
official representative of the central government of Spain

After the boy’s body is removed from the mine, he is taken to the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Malaga for an autopsy.

The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, promised to announce the official time of mourning for the tragedy soon. The authorities of the municipality of Totalan, located near the scene, also announced plans to declare a three-day mourning. The chairman of the Spanish government, Pedro Sanchez, publiclyoffered condolences to the parents and thanked the rescuers for their work.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]All of Spain is experiencing an immense sadness from the death of Julen. We closely watched every step approaching it. We will always be grateful for the tireless efforts of those who have searched for him in recent days. I express my support and condolences to his parents and relatives.[/perfectpullquote]
Pedro sanchez
prime minister of spain

National tragedy

What happened was the tragic end of the story, followed by all of Spain. In addition to a team of 300 rescuers, about 100 volunteers provided assistance in the operation. For almost two weeks of searching for the boy, the management of the local hotel canceled all room reservations and provided free rooms for volunteers, rescuers and journalists who did not leave the site of the operation.

The local women’s association provided daily nutrition to a rescue team. The owners of the nearest private houses also provided free accommodation to all participants in the operation, including Julen’s parents. In the house, they were looked after by friends and relatives, and also by a team of psychologists – they worked in shifts so that the couple would not be left alone.

A woman sings near the site of the rescue operation in support of the professionals and parents of Hulen. AFP photo
A woman sings near the site of the rescue operation in support of the professionals and parents of Hulen. AFP photo

According to the publication Mirror, a few hours before the discovery of the body, Julen’s father turned to doctors with a panic attack. He and his spouse were in the house of one of the locals 30 minutes away from the rescue site when they were informed of the death of their son.

What will happen next

On January 22, when the boy’s rescue work was still going on, the Malaga Supreme Court initiated an investigation into the fall of the child into the mine. According to preliminary data, in December 2018, a local resident (his name was not named) dug a 100-meter pit in which Hulen fell in his territory to search for groundwater.

For work, the man turned to the local drilling company Triben Perforaciones. The head of the company, Antonio Sanchez, said that he was personally present during the work and saw how the hole was closed. The specialist suggested that he was re-opened after he finished the work.

There was no sign or warning sign next to the mine. According to the parents of the deceased boy, she was only slightly covered with stones. According to thepublication El País, the drilling of the mine took place without the permission of local authorities and with violations of safety rules. The investigation is engaged in the Spanish Civil Guard.

It is not known whether Hulen’s 29-year-old parents are planning to sue a man who illegally drilled a hundred-meter-high mine in his section. For spouses, this is the second major tragedy in the last few years – in 2017, their three-year-old son died due to heart problems. Hulen was their only child.

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