3Rescue efforts for boys in Thai cave have begun: mission chief

09 July, 2018, 07:45 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Elon Musk sends engineers to help Thai cave rescue mission | TheHill

Mirror - A former Navy Seal working to rescue a dozen boys and their coach trapped in a cave in Thailand has died from a lack of oxygen, authorities have said.

A senior army commander, Maj.

Rescuers began the mission at 10am on Sunday (local time) and it would take many hours before the first boy emerged from the cave, Narongsak Osottanakorn told reporters.

Musk also brainstormed on Twitter about possible technology for a safe evacuation, suggesting that an air tunnel constructed with soft tubing like a Bouncy Castle could provide flexible passage out.

Gong Hui, a Chinese diver involved in the operation that has drawn some 130 Thai and worldwide divers, told Reuters on Saturday before the fresh rains that water levels in the cave had "receded a lot" after sustained pumping had removed millions of litres of water.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha expressed his condolences over Samarn's death but it would not deter the rescue teams, a spokesman said.

The boys have asked the navy SEALs taking care of them in the cave for details about what has happened in the World Cup since they got trapped on June 23.

The strategically placed canisters allow divers to stay underwater for longer during what is about a five-hour trip to reach the stranded team.

Conditions in the cave are worsening and Thai authorities are now in a race against time to save the boys before the weather worsens.


Authorities say that they remain undeterred by the death of the rescue diver, and will continue the rescue mission as planned. "It's going to be muddy water". And with any luck, perhaps even in time for them to watch the World Cup final, which is set for June 15 in Moscow.

An Australian doctor, who is part of Sunday's rescue mission, checked the health of the boys last night and gave the all clear for the rescue to proceed, Narongsak said.

But the rain had begun to fall.

"The families should focus on proper parenting while society should not judge whether this was wrong or right but take this as an opportunity to learn", it said in a statement, promising counselling for the boys once freed.

Narongsak said the boys were still healthy and have practiced wearing diving masks and breathing in preparation for the diving possibility.

More than 100 exploratory holes have been bored - some shallow, but the longest 400 meters deep - into the mountainside, in an attempt to open a second evacuation route and avoid forcing the boys into a risky dive through submerged tunnels. Officials have been attempting to drain the cave so the boys do not have to dive out of the cave in treacherous conditions and have succeeded in reducing water levels in the first section of the cave to the point that people can wade in and out.

Since then, the situation has taken a more urgent turn. "Fighting strong currents, you use up a lot of air and a lot of energy".

Letters that family members have written, have been delivered to the boys.

If the weather is on their side and enough water can be pumped out of the cave, the boys could get out the same way they got in, on foot, perhaps with some swimming. While underwater, the rescuer passed out and efforts to resuscitate him failed. Queue said he wept upon hearing the good news.

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