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Apr 7, 2010 11:59 AM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

No response to pipe banging by rescuers at W.Va. mine

There has been no response from any survivors to rescuers banging on pipes in a West Virginia coal mine where four miners are missing after a blast that killed 25 people.

Gov. Joe Manchin told an early morning briefing that rescue workers have finished drilling a first vent hole in an attempt to remove toxic gas from the Upper Big Branch Mine. They are trying to make a section of it safe enough for rescuers to search for the miners as hope for their survival grew dim.

Once the mine is ventilated, officials say teams would need four or five hours to reach the area where rescue workers believe the miners are.

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