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SAPPING THE ENEMY'S TRENCHES

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Tht’recent explosion of a huge mine under the trenches opposite the British lines has drawn special attention to this method of attack. The pictures and diagrams given above will enable the reader to form an Idea of the methods employed and of the Immense amount of earth displaced. After a long narrow gallery, supported here and there with props as in ‘a mine, has been dug, various charges are laid and covered with earth and sand bags, a process which is known as tamping.” This serves to confinethe gases and render the explosion more effective. It is not always posssible to dri* the passage sufficiently under the enemy’s trenches before countermining is begur move on the enemy’s part which may necessitate the immediate explosion of the m with some danger to one’s own trenches. In the saps shown above the charge I, been laid well up to the German trenches, and has then been effectively fir Some idea of the size of the craters formed by such an explosion can be gained froi.the large view, which was taken among the wreck of some German trenches on the western front. The height of the men standing in the centre will enable the reader he dimensions of this earthen eruption. Recently a mine crater near Hooge being held by the Germans, who had converted It Into a machine gun fort, ,ed by British sappers. One correspondent states that they mined under the ay towards the redoubt, while the heavy artillery shelled the enemy’sposition all round this neighbourhood to such an extent that the ground was plugged with Innumerable holes. A frightful spectacle was seen when the mine was exploded. The earth was torn asunder as though a volcano had burst In those fields, and it vomited up a vast tumult of soli and stones, among which there was a scatter of fragments of things organic, some recently animate. When the earth and the smoke had settled again it was seen that the enemy’s redoubt had ceased to exist.


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Issue 815. - Vol 62

Sep, 04 1915

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