Final Rescue Mission For Trapped Thai Boys' Football Team Is Underway

Ruben Ruiz
July 10, 2018

The team of 12 boys and their coach entered the cave system on June 23, when torrential rain caused the water level within the cave to rise rapidly, forcing them to venture deeper.

The Thai official overseeing the effort to rescue members of a teen soccer team trapped in a flooded cave says a third rescue operation has begun Tuesday and aims to bring out the remaining four boys and their coach.

Tuesday's rescue had been expected to take longer than the two previous operations, which took 11 and nine hours, according to the Facebook page of the Royal Thai Navy SEALs.

Authorities then struggled to determine the best way to save the "Wild Boars", with the group stuck on a shelf above the floodwaters in pitch darkness.

Adesman said that PTSD is an issue for protracted trauma, and he's optimistic the worst is behind the boys trapped in the cave. "Who the hell would give that to a kid?"

One fear had been that they would panic while trying to swim underwater, even with a diver escorting them.

The head of the operation, Narongsak Osottanakorn, said earlier the final operation would be "more challenging" because one more survivor would be brought out, along with three Navy SEALs who have been accompanying them.

It could take two to four days complete the mission, officials said.

While the first group to be rescued has been reunited with their parents, officials said they had to meet from a distance ― "through glass".

Elite divers hauled 4 more young footballers out of a flooded Thai cave on Monday, July 9, authorities said, bringing to 8 the number saved in a stunning rescue mission but still leaving 5 others trapped.

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Dozens of other medical professionals and rescuers were at the cave entrance to assist the divers when they emerged with the boys. It raised hope and excitement that the remaining two - including the team's 25-year-old coach - could soon follow.

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Less than an hour after the helicopter took off, Thai public television aired live video of a medivac helicopter landing close to a hospital in the city of Chiang Rai, around 60 kilometers (37 miles) from the cave.

The first group has reportedly been allowed to eat chocolate and bread after requesting it.

The boys, ages 11-16, and their 25-year-old coach became stranded when they went exploring inside after a practice game.

Two of the boys possibly have a lung infection but all eight are generally "healthy and smiling", he said.

They are all likely to stay in hospital for seven days due to their weakened immune systems. We've started giving them "medical food" this morning. A massive global search operation was launched and it took 10 days to locate the boys, who had taken shelter on a dry slope deep in the complex.

Four were rescued Sunday and another four were rescued on Monday.

Four ambulances and a convoy of other vehicles arrived at the cave site Tuesday morning as rains hit the region.

With oxygen levels in their chamber falling to unsafe levels and complete flooding of the cave system possible, rescuers pushed ahead with the least-worst option of having divers escort them out through the extremely narrow and water-filled tunnels.

Overnight, the entrepreneur Elon Musk posted on social media that he had personally delivered a child-sized submarine to the site which he has developed to assist with the operation, but it is unlikely to play a role. He said he left the equipment there in case rescuers could use it in the future.

Other reports by GizPress

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