Peruvian authorities have said that nine trapped miners are being supplied with sports drinks, soup and food while police, firefighters and other workers work to free them.
Jose Saavedra, the police chief, in southern Peru's Ica region said the men have been trapped in a horizontal mining shaft, not very deep under the surface, that collapsed on Thursday.
Rescue workers continued their efforts on Saturday morning to rescue the miners, already trapped underground for three days.
Saavedra said that the bottled items are being pushed to the miners through a hose.
He said the miners are behind debris about 20ft wide that collapsed when they set off an explosion to dislodge copper ore.
National Police and Civil Defence experts from Yauca del Rosario in the northern province of Ica, 565km north of capital Lima, were able to speak to the trapped miners to find out their physical and health conditions.
Edgar Peralta, in charge of the rescue operation, said that considerable progress had been made by fire-fighters and miner colleagues throughout the morning in the rescue, although a new collapse complicated the mission.
The miners were working on their own at a mine that reportedly shut down commercial operations in the early 1980s in a hamlet about 282km south of Lima.
Artisan mining, which is often done without the security measures regulated by the government, have periodic accidents of this type in Peru.
Last March three miners died trapped in a tunnel when working under unsupervised conditions at Jicamarca, east of Lima.
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|William A. Cook|