1 dies, 3 rescued as pit caves in at Pallikaranai

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Chennai: One worker died and three others were rescued when a large pit they were digging for underground drainage work caved in at Vallal Pari Nagar in Pallikaranai on Tuesday.
While firemen were able to pull out three of the trapped workers from under the debris, the fourth, Rajesh, 25, of Uttar Pradesh, died before they could reach him. Nearly 25 firemen laboured with 200 local residents to  rescue the trapped men. 
The workers were digging a 20 ft deep 4 ft wide pit to lay pipes on the II main road, 12th street junction when the earth caved in, the police said. The work was being carried out by a private contractor from Hyderabad for Metro Water. Locals said the workers wore neither helmets nor any other safety gear. 
3 rescued from 18-ft deep pit
Chennai: The fire and rescue team managed pull out three of four workers trapped aft­er a pit dug for undergr­ound drainage caved in at Va­llal Pari Nagar in Pall­ika­ranai on Tuesday. Ho­wever one worker, Rajesh, 25, a native of Uttar Pr­ad­esh, died by the time rescue workers reached him.
Nearly 25 fire and rescue service personnel under the supervision of district fire officer Meenakshi Vij­ay­akumar, worked along with 200 local residents to re­scue the workers tra­p­p­ed in the pit after the ea­rth caved in while Rajesh tried to drill a rock.
The rescue personnel received a distress call at 4.14 pm and the rescue teams reached the spot by 4.31 pm. Mahadoor Majod, 28, was rescued by 4.50 pm while two others, Manoj, 23, and Venkitesan, 45, were taken out at 5.20 pm. The rescue teams reached Rajesh by 7.20 pm and by then he was dead.
“Local residents were of great help in the rescue operation. The workers we­re digging a 20 feet deep, 4 feet wide pit to lay pi­pes on the II main ro­ad–12th street junction wh­en the earth caved in. The workers had dug 18 feet when they hit a rock.
They were drilling the ro­ck when the mishap occ­u­r­red,” the police exp­lai­n­ed. The work was carried out by a private contractor based in Hyderabad for metro water’s work of underground drainage in Pa­llikaranai, in the exte­n­de­d area of Chennai corporation.
Local residents told this newspaper that the workers engaged in the work did not follow the req­uired safety norms. “They we­re not provided with helmets and nobody at the si­te knew what to do till the firemen reached the spot,” a resident said.
However, when contacted, the area executive en­g­i­neer of metro water, Na­i­na Durai evaded questions on the mishap.

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