Rescue mission day two : four more boys evacuated

Lester Mason
July 11, 2018

A vehicle loaded with oxygen tanks is seen near the Tham Luang cave complex in the northern province of Chiang Rai, Thailand.

Officials said on Sunday that it may "take days" to rescue all 12 boys and their coach.

"When we heard the boys were found and began to see the visual imagery on TV of the water conditions and what it looked like in the cave, and I saw these hoses with water pouring out of them, I thought, 'We need to get somebody there to be sure they're getting maximum water out of these pumps, '" Decker said in an interview in Singapore.

Last week Musk said he was sending teams to Thailand from his private space exploration firm, SpaceX, and engineering firm, Boring Co. which is developing tunneling systems for transport projects. The official declined to be identified as he is not authorised to speak to the media.

A former Thai Navy SEAL diver died in the cave last week due to lack of oxygen.

The eight rescued boys were recuperating in a hospital from their ordeal huddled together on a tiny patch of higher ground where they had sought refuge after a rainstorm flooded the massive Tham Luan Nang Non cave complex as they were exploring it after soccer practice on June 23. He said that water level in the cave continued to recede, facilitating the rescue operations five hours early on Monday.

The four boys pulled from the cave Sunday were happy and in good health, authorities said. It is a race against the clock with heavy rain expected in coming days, which would again dangerously flood the tunnels with fast flowing, and rising, water.

The first four boys, from the group of 13, including the coach, were rescued on Sunday. "Oxygen bottles are ready", rescue operations chief Narongsak Osottanakorn told reporters on Monday afternoon after announcing the second phase of the rescue bid had begun.

The extraction of the four on Monday followed a similar pattern to the previous day, with the youngsters emerging in quick succession just before nightfall after navigating a treacherous escape route of more than four kilometers (2.5 miles).

All four boys brought out of the cave on Monday were taken by ambulance to a waiting helicopter which ferried them to hospital.

He had said fresh air tanks needed to be laid along the underwater route.

Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha arrived in Chiang Rai and visited the eight rescued boys in the hospital Monday night, according to Osatanakorn.

US Embassy Bangkok spokesman Steve Castonguay said: "The US will remain here to continue to support this operation until all the soccer players and their coach have been rescued".

TRT World's John Joe Regan has the latest from Thailand.

Rescuers sought to take out the boys in the weakest condition first.

The divers also brought out touching notes for the families written by some of the trapped boys.

They are then taken to hospital in Chiang Rai.

"They (the four) will be kept away from their parents for a while because we are concerned about infections", Narongsak said.

President Donald Trump tweeted yesterday: "The US is working very closely with the Government of Thailand to help get all of the children out of the cave and to safety".

"I'm hoping for good news", he said.

By Mondayevening, the boys were able to joke, laugh, and have normal conversation, doctors said.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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