Monday, 24 September, 2018

3rd Thai cave rescue mission underway

Thailand Ministry of Public Health Thailand Ministry of Public Health
Kenny Thornton | 12 July, 2018, 11:37

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces said that he was glad to hear that the rescue operations were successful.

The third mission, conducted on Tuesday, concluded with the rescue of the final four boys and the coach.

Elon Musk visited the flooded Thailand cave to offer a "kid-sized" submarine to help with the rescue - only to be told his technology wasn't "practical" to the mission.

Thirteen foreign divers and five members of Thailand's elite navy SEAL unit make up the main team guiding the boys to safety.

The operation on Monday went more smoothly than on Sunday and took two hours less as the practice became more refined, he said. Another two more boys left the cave complex a short time later followed by the fourth boy. He said a medic and three SEALS in the cave, who've been looking after those trapped, will also come out. Rescue operations have halted for the night and will restart on Tuesday.

The first eight boys rescued are in good mental and physical health and are asking for chocolate, officials said Tuesday, although two were on antibiotics after being tested for pneumonia. Medical experts say they are in high spirits and generally healthy.

Asked whether the remaining four "Wild Boars" team members and their coach would come out at the same time in the next rescue effort, he said: "It depends on the plan".

Officials confirmed they had restarted the rescue effort for the third day at 10 a.m. local time, or 11 p.m.

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"We have not been told which child has been brought out".

Rescuers in Thailand are racing against predicted monsoon rains - that could kick up in the middle of this week - to free the remaining boys still trapped in a flooded cave.

A total of eight boys have now been brought out of the cave complex.

Dr. Jedsada Chokedamrongsook, the permanent secretary of the Thai Health Ministry, said the first group of boys taken out on Sunday were aged 14 to 16. But the early signs were promising, with X-rays and blood tests showing just two had signs of pneumonia and that they were in a "normal state" after taking antibiotics, Jedsada said.

They are all likely to stay in hospital for seven days due to their weakened immune systems. The heaviest rain tends to fall in late summer.

They have also been given sunglasses to wear as they adjust to daylight after days trapped in the dark. They were missing for nine days before being discovered by British divers last week.

Even though Musk's mini-sub was never actually used in the Thai rescue, the entrepreneur suggested its development has not been in vain.

In the first video that Musk posted online, scuba divers can be seen testing out the submarine at the Palisades Charter High School pool.

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