The second day of a multi-national rescue effort to rescue 12 boys and their soccer coach trapped in a flooded cave has seen an eighth person brought to the surface.
Images courtesy of RealTimeImages.
According to a Reuters report, four people were seen being carried out of the cave complex to waiting ambulances over the course of Monday.
The rescue efforts began on Sunday, and four boys were brought out then.
Officials reported that all the boys that have been rescued have been taken to hospital, with the four rescued on Sunday being in a good condition.
The identities of the rescued boys have not been released out of respect for the families of the boys who were still trapped.
The boys in hospital were being kept away from their parents for the time being out of fear of infection.
“The four children are well at Chiang Rai Prachanukroh hospital. But they still need to be kept away from their parents and others due to fear about infection,” Narongsak Osottoanakorn, chief of the rescue mission, said.
The boys belong to the Wild Boars soccer team. They have been trapped in the cave since June 23. They went exploring the vast cave complex after practice when a downpour flooded the tunnels.
The rescue team is made up of 13 foreign divers and five members of Thailand’s elite Navy SEAL unit.
The boys and their coach were found last Monday by British divers.
The rescue operation is expected to take about three or four days. The Tham Luang cave rescue – in the Thai northern province of Chiang Rai – is a race against time, as heavy rain is expected to fall within the coming days. This could dangerously flood the tunnels with fast, flowing, rising water.
According to reports, medical teams are concerned about the boys possibly contracting hypothermia and an airborne lung infection known as “cave disease”, which is caused by bat and bird droppings.
Access to the cave complex is cut off during the rainy, which runs from May to October when heavy rains can quickly flood it. Relatives of the boys say they were visiting the caves during the dry season.
The story of the boys and their coach has not only gripped the nation of Thailand but also that of the world.
The president of soccer’s governing body, FIFA, has even invited the boys to the World Cup final in Moscow on Sunday if they are rescued in time.