MARION, IL (KFVS) - The Illinois Mining Institute gathers once a year to exchange ideas and new trade tools, but also to host a 'mine rescue competition.' The competition took place on Wednesday, Aug. 30 as a way to see which rescue teams are the most prepared.
There is a course with pathways marked off with ropes symbolizing tunnels and walls in a mine. Throughout the course are various scenarios laid out for the rescue teams to address quickly and properly.
These are emergency events like unstable roofs, explosive gas leaks, even someone being trapped behind a collapsed wall. As they move through the course the rescue teams create a map of the area and communicate with each other via radio.
Rescue teams are required to do at least three competitions like this a year according to Director of Mines and Minerals in Illinois, Tom Benner, but he said they normally do more.
There were twelve teams participating from Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, and Missouri.