4 more boys rescued from Thai cave, bringing total to 8

April FrancisJul 11, 2018

Like much of the world, Patrick Decker has been engrossed in the saga of 12 boys trapped with their soccer coach in a flooded cave in northern Thailand.

Divers have rescued four more boys from a vast cave system in northern Thailand on the second day of a challenging mission, as the first four rescued boys recover in hospital.

The boys and their coach went exploring in the massive Tham Luang Nang Non cave on June 23 after a soccer practice, and were cut off when a rainstorm flooded the cave.

Two boys were brought out on Monday afternoon from a deep cave in Thailand where four were rescued on Sunday, leaving just six more and their soccer coach inside, a military source said.

Officials had said before restarting the efforts that they hoped to have all nine people remaining in the cave rescued by the end of Monday local time.

Authorities have not confirmed the identity of the first four boys rescued.

Rescuers in Thailand on Monday began their second attempt to free the remaining boys and their coach still trapped inside a cave, but warned that heavy rains have soaked the area and they are now in a race with "water and time".

In the tweet, Musk said that the "kid-size" submarine was en-route to Thailand along with a group of engineers and was expected to reach there in 17 hours.

Authorities have refused to confirm names reported in local media, but in the small town of Mae Sai where the cave is located, it's all anybody is talking about.

There are now five members of the Wild Boar football team now left in the cave.

The perilous rescues have involved two divers accompanying each boy, all of whom have been learning to dive since July 2, when searchers found them. It is about two kilometres from the entrance.

It took hours to place oxygen tanks and guide ropes along the narrow tunnel leading to the boys. All four of those rescued yesterday were safe, he said.

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It was not immediately clear Monday how the overnight rains had impacted water levels inside the flooded cave.

"The four children are well at Chiang Rai Prachanukroh hospital".

Osotthanakorn said the boys were hungry and asking for a Thai dish of beef with basil and chilli.

"I don't know if he is out, they didn't tell us", she said as she rested in a hut close to the mouth of the cave.

Narongsak said they will be "kept away" from physical contact with their parents until the risk of infection is over, he said, adding doctors will decide on family visits "at a distance or through glass".

"Living in a cave has a different environment, which might contain animals that could transmit any disease", they said.

The boys are wearing special diving masks that cover their whole face as this helps them breathe more easily from their oxygen tanks.

"Visitors will only be allowed to meet and talk to the patients", he said.

The former governor of Chiang Rai province, Narongsak Osottanakorn, said the healthiest boys were evacuated first and the operation was going "very smoothly". Previously, round trips through the cave network would take about 11 hours. Two other boys came out at 7:40 p.m. and 7:50 p.m.

The boys, some of whom don't know how to swim, have also been taught diving techniques to prepare them for their hard journey home. Onlookers were seen watching and cheering as they drove by.

As of Monday morning, nine people remained trapped in the cave, including the team's coach.

"They (the first four rescued) are well and happy".

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