A volunteer has died while trying to rescue illegal miners trapped underground since Wednesday in Bindura, northern Zimbabwe.
The state newspaper the Herald reports that over the weekend, a boulder rolled down onto the man, pushing him into water near the shaft opening that rescuers have battled for days to drain.
His body was retrieved on Sunday.
The efforts of Zimbabwe’s mines ministry, local mining companies and illegal miners have been hampered by inadequate machinery, and breakdowns.
Family members who have camped at the site for days are losing hope.
It’s not clear how many miners are trapped, but officials say they could number over a dozen.
On Wednesday, a mine pillar collapsed, following a rockfall thought to have been triggered by illegal miners blasting inside a disused shaft.
Illegal mining has increased in Zimbabwe as a result of the economic problems and high unemployment.