So Lonely

NASA, Navy to Help Trapped Miners Survive

If the 33 miners trapped in Chile are going to survive, they're going to need to learn how to deal with isolation. That’s why the Chilean government is consulting a stable of experts to help them cope with isolation, from NASA specialists who know about the solitude of space travel to Navy submarine officers. Rescuers have even rigged up a small home theater half a mile underground so the miners can watch films and maintain some semblance of psychological health. “Movies are possible,” said a local city councilwoman. “But the psychologists will decide what movies they will see. It’s up to them if something like Avatar would be too upsetting.” The mine collapsed on Aug. 5 and the trapped miners are apparently in good spirits. Psychologists are worried, however, that post-traumatic stress may set in once the euphoria of establishing contact last Sunday wears off. Rescuers hope to free them sometime before Christmas.