Published: Tue, July 10, 2018
Sport | By Tony Jimenez

Rescuers have freed four boys trapped in Thai cave

Rescuers have freed four boys trapped in Thai cave

An elite team of Thai Navy SEALs and foreign rescue divers on Tuesday began what they hoped would be a final push to rescue four boys and their soccer coach from a cave near the Thai-Myanmar border after extracting eight others through a labyrinth of tight passages.

It's been more than two weeks since the 12 boys and their soccer coach became trapped in the flooded Tham Luang cave at the Khun Nam Nang Non Forest Park in Chiang Rai.

The second shift of the rescue effort to evacuate the trapped soccer team saw a team of 18 Thai and worldwide divers guide four boys about 2 1/2 miles (4 kilometres) to the cave's entrance using a 3-mile (4.8 kilometre) rope on Monday.

Four boys and their coach are still underground.

Narongsak said after the first four boys were rescued that they would be quarantined "for a while because we are concerned about infections". This seems less likely now given the need for the boys to undergo further tests.

Elon Musk, the billionaire owner of Tesla and SpaceX, was in Thailand with engineers from his companies to offer their expertise in the rescue.


As the minutes stretched into hours under the hot sun in this corner of north-western Thailand bordering Myanmar, hopes were rising that news of a third successful rescue by the so-called "all-star" team of Thai and worldwide divers - which included as many as eight Australians in support roles - was imminent.

The four who were rescued previously were taken to a hospital in Chiang Rai for evaluation.

Thai Navy SEALS on Monday proudly announced their latest successful extraction of four youth soccer players trapped in a cave by adopting the U.S. Navy's "Hooyah!"

However, the boys and their coach are facing malnutrition, dehydration and other unknown ailments.

He also said they would be "kept away" from physical contact with their parents until the youngsters are no longer at risk of infection.

The operation to save the final five began at 10.08am local time (1.08pm AEST).


He was taken by helicopter and then ambulance to the hospital in Chiang Rai were the first four boys, who were rescued on Sunday, are now being held in quarantine as they undergo tests.

"If the rain god helps us, then we may be able to work fast", the head of the rescue mission, Narongsak told reporters.

The risky underwater rescues - considered a last resort - involve two divers accompanying each of the boys, none of whom had experience diving before they were found on July 2.

A doctor and three Thai Navy SEAL members who have stayed with the group since they were found more than a week ago will also leave the cave.

In that mission, two divers accompanied each boy, guided by a rope.

All eight boys, aged between 12 and 16, are being treated in an isolation ward in Chiang Rai Prachanukroh hospital. "Mini-sub is ready if needed". "We should hear good news again", Narongsak said.


Musk has offered a "kid-sized" submarine, named Wild Boar after the kids' soccer team, to help in the rescue operation.

Like this: