May 2, 2006
This year marks fifteen years since the Beaconsfield mine disaster.
In the evening of April 25, a small earthquake caused rocks to fall underground, in the mine, causing three miners to be trapped.
Heartbreakingly, one of the miners, Larry Knight, was killed in the initial rockfall. The two remaining miners, Brant Webb and Todd Russell, remained stuck behind 14.5 metres of stubbornly hard rock.
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By May 2 Mr Webb and Mr Russell had been stuck in a 1.5m x 1.5m metal cage for over five days.
The front page of The Examiner had Mr Webb's children, Zach and Zoey, expressing hope their father's love for their mother would inspire him through the agonising wait for rescue.
"He is her life ... they do everything together," Zoey said.
The day before food and drink had been managed to reach the miners who were just under one kilometre underground via a 10-centimetre-wide and 12-metre-long pipe.
Mine manager Matthew Gill had managed to make verbal contact with the miners who, when asked, had said they would like "food, water and to get out".
The rescue effort was in full swing with state of the art rock breaking equipment and eminent experts making their way to Beaconsfield from around the country.
Mr Gill said of the precariousness of the rescue: "Consideration is continuing on non-blasting means to drive a tunnel to get them out".
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"The work would have to proceed very carefully to try and avoid any further rockfalls."
Drilling started the following day on May 3.
All told, the men were trapped for 13 days before finally walking to freedom in the early hours of May 9, 2006.
It was a dramatic time in Northern Tasmania, even in sport. Sunday, April 30 was the date of the infamous St Kilda and Fremantle game that ended up the subject of a court case.
The game was marred by umpires missing the sound of the siren and allowing the game to carry on for a few extra seconds in which the Saints snatched a dramatic draw after booting a last-gasp point.
The draw was eventually overturned with Fremantle granted four premiership points for a victory.
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