​Thai Cave Rescue Operation To Resume In 10-20 Hours

Four people have been rescued from the cave where they were trapped in northern Thailand, with another operation planned in 10-20 hours' time to help the remaining boys.

The boys - who became stranded along with the rest of their team and coach after rising water levels left them stranded - had to travel 1km underwater, with the first two emerging from the caves at around 5.40pm local time, before a further two came out two hours later.

The four of them were taken straight to hospital.

"Our operation was more successful than we expected," Narongsak Osatanakorn - who is the Governor of Chiang Rai province and head of the joint command centre coordinating the rescue - said at a press briefing on Sunday.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Confirming that four unnamed people had been rescued, Narongsak also thanked people around the world for their continued support with the ambitious rescue operation.

The first rescue attempt had to conclude for the night as the team had 'used all the oxygen', Narongsak explained, adding that it would resume in 10-20 hours.

"It's actually just falling quiet here," said Dan Johnston on the BBC News Channel.

"There's been a lot of activity in the past few minutes. It looks like people are leaving this site for the night.

"One thing to bear in mind is the tiredness levels of the cave diving exerts who are leading this operation. They have been working busily all day and it looks like some of them are actually leaving the dive site now.

"It looks like they've taken the decision that they have done as much as they can for today."

The rescue process started at 10am and involved 13 international divers and five Thai navy seals, who were described by Narongsak as 'an all-star team', reports the Daily Mail.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Referring to the day as 'D-Day', Narongsak said that the operation would be going ahead as the water level had reached 'the lowest it has been in 10 days'.

"We ask to pray that this operation is a success," he said.

"The boys are physically and mentally fit to come out. All of the families have been told about today's operation."

According to a document released by the Thai authorities, the operation has involved two divers accompanying each of the teenagers, who are being brought out in groups.

Loosely translated, it reads: "Full face masks; two divers accompanying one boy; guided by rope. When facing a very narrow path, they will release the tank from back and slowly roll tank and guide the boy through. They walk from chamber three to mouth of the cave."

Let's hope the rest of the ambitious operation goes as successfully as its first stage.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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