Rescue of Thai soccer team trapped in cave
LATEST UPDATE: December 29, 2018 - 9:57am
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December 29, 2018

A team of British divers who helped save a junior football team stranded in a flooded cave in Thailand were among those awarded in Britain's traditional New Year Honours as announced.

The seven underwater specialists involved in the remarkable rescue were joined on the prestigious annual achievement list by Hollywood filmmaker Christopher Nolan and former supermodel Lesley Lawson, better known as Twiggy. — AFP

July 24, 2018

Nine Australians involved in rescuing 12 boys and their soccer coach from a flooded cave in Thailand receive bravery medals for putting their lives in danger during the treacherous ordeal.

Anesthetist Richard Harris and his dive buddy Craig Challen, a retired veterinarian, receive the Star of Courage, the second highest civilian bravery decoration in the Australian honors system after the Cross of Valor, Governor-General Peter Cosgrave said in a statement.

Six police and a navy diver receive the lesser Bravery Medal. — AP

July 18, 2018

The youth soccer teammates rescued after 18 days trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand are expected to be released from the hospital and to speak about their ordeal.

A news conference with the 12 boys and their coach is being arranged for the evening in the northern city of Chiang Rai, where the boys have been recovering in a hospital since last week. A conference hall that is being prepared as the venue for the news conference was decorated as a soccer field. — AP

July 14, 2018

The 12 boys and their soccer coach are recovering well and in a brief new video list their food wish lists while the health minister says they're expected to be discharged next week.

Video messages of the boys from a Saturday news conference show them still wearing surgical masks, a safeguard against infection since the last of them was pulled from a cave on Tuesday after being trapped for almost three weeks.

Public Health Minister Piyasakol Sakolsattayatorn says all 13 are set to leave the hospital next Thursday. Doctors say they will still need to be closely monitored for physical and psychological effects of their ordeal. — AP

July 12, 2018

The Thai hospital where the 12 boys and their soccer coach are recuperating after being rescued from a flooded cave has released video showing them in their hospital beds, chatting with nurses and making two-finger victory signs.

The video shows the boys in an isolation ward in beds with crisp white sheets and wearing green surgical masks.

Some of their parents are seen crying and waving to them from behind glass. — AP

July 11, 2018

The official who led the Thai cave rescue says the medic and three Thai navy SEAL divers who stayed with the trapped boys after they were found have left the flooded cave.

He says they are all in strong condition.

A daring rescue mission in the treacherous confines of the flooded cave in northern Thailand saved all 12 boys and their soccer coach who were trapped deep inside, ending an 18-day ordeal on Tuesday.

The leader of the operation, Chiang Rai acting Gov. Narongsak Osatanakorn, said, "We did something nobody thought possible." — AP

July 11, 2018

One of soccer's most popular teams, Manchester United, has expressed its relief over the rescue of the Thai youth soccer team and invited the Wild Boars players and coach, as well as those who saved them, to come see them play on their home ground this season.

A message posted on the ManU Twitter account said: "Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected. We would love to welcome the team from Wild Boars Football Club and their rescuers to Old Trafford this coming season."

Manchester United is very popular in Thailand, with 135,000 "friends" on the local fan club's Facebook page.

The international soccer federation, FIFA, had already invited the boys to attend the World Cup final in Russia this Sunday. However, doctors now treating the boys in a hospital have said it would be too soon for them to make the trip.

July 11, 2018

Thailand's prime minister says the 12 boys saved from a flooded cave were given an anti-anxiety medication to help with their rescue.

Asked at a weekly news conference Tuesday if the boys had been sedated, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said, "Who would chloroform them? If they're chloroformed, how could they come out? It's called Anxiolytic, something to make them not excited, not stressed."

Prayuth also said the Tham Luang cave will be closed for some time. He said it needs to be made safe so it can be developed into a tourist destination. — AP

July 11, 2018

The official who led the Thai cave rescue says the medic and three Thai navy SEAL divers who stayed with the trapped boys after they were found have left the flooded cave.

He says they are all in strong condition.

A daring rescue mission in the treacherous confines of the flooded cave in northern Thailand saved all 12 boys and their soccer coach who were trapped deep inside, ending an 18-day ordeal on Tuesday.

The leader of the operation, Chiang Rai acting Gov. Narongsak Osatanakorn, said, "We did something nobody thought possible." — AP

July 10, 2018

All 12 boys and their soccer coach have been rescued from a flooded cave in northern Thailand, the Thai navy SEALs said Tuesday, ending an 18-day ordeal that riveted people around the world. — AP

July 10, 2018

Thailand's navy SEALs say a ninth boy has been brought out of a flooded cave in the country's far north.

The SEALs said on their Facebook page that "the 9th Wild Boar was out of the cave at 4:06 p.m." Tuesday, referring to the name of the trapped boys' soccer team.

Rescuers hope to complete their mission Tuesday after rescuing four boys on each of the previous two days.

The 12 boys and their 25-year-old coach were trapped by flooding in the cave more than two weeks ago. — AP

July 9, 2018

An ambulance with flashing lights has left a cave complex in northern Thailand hours after the start of the second phase of an operation to rescue a youth soccer team trapped inside the flooded cave for more than two weeks.

After the ambulance was seen leaving the complex at around 5 p.m. Monday, a helicopter took off. Authorities have said helicopters were ready to take cave evacuees to a hospital. It was unclear who was inside the ambulance or the helicopter.

Chiang Rai acting Gov. Narongsak Osatanakorn, who is heading the rescue, had said the second phase began at 11 a.m. Monday and authorities “hope to hear good news in the next few hours.”

Nine people remained trapped in the cave, including the team’s coach, after four boys were rescued on Sunday, the first day of the rescue operation. — AP

July 9, 2018

Thailand's interior minister says the same divers who took part in Sunday's rescue of four boys trapped in a flooded cave will also conduct the next operation as they know the cave conditions and what to do.

In comments released by the government, Interior Minister Anupong Paojinda said officials were meeting Monday morning about the next stage of the operation and how to extract the remaining nine people from the cave in the country's north.

Anupong said divers need to place more air canisters along the underwater route to where the boys and their coach have been trapped since June 23. He said that process can take several hours.

He said the boys rescued Sunday are strong and safe but need to undergo detailed medical checks. — AP

July 9, 2018

Officials say it could take up to four days to complete the rescue of eight boys and their soccer coach from inside a northern Thailand cave.

Authorities temporarily stopped their efforts Monday to replenish air tanks along the cave's treacherous exit route.

Expert divers on Sunday managed to get four of the 12 boys to safety. They were quickly transported to a hospital in the town of Chiang Rai, the provincial capital.

The names of the rescued boys were not released.

Rescuers have been navigating a dangerous and complicated plan to get the children out under the threat of heavy rain and rising water underground.

The entire group had been trapped for more than two weeks. — AP

July 9, 2018

The California tunnel company run by Elon Musk is continuing to maintain a presence at the Thai cave where several boys and their soccer coach are awaiting rescue.

A spokesman for Boring Co. said Sunday that the company has four engineers who are "offering support in any way the government deems useful."

Musk tweeted early Saturday that he was working with a team from his Space X rocket company to build a "tiny kid-size submarine" to transport the children.

But Saturday night, he tweeted that the cave was now closed for the rescue by divers.

"Will continue testing in LA in case needed later or somewhere else in the future," he wrote.

Musk says the sub would be light enough to be carried by two divers and small enough to get through narrow cave gaps. — AP

July 8, 2018

A Thai army commander says the ongoing rescue of 12 boys and their coach could take 2-4 days depending on conditions inside the partially flooded cave.

The governor in charge of the operation says two divers will accompany each boy as they are gradually extracted. The operation began at 10 a.m. and he said it would take at least 11 hours for the first person to be rescued. — AP

July 7, 2018

The Thai governor in charge of rescuing 12 boys and their soccer coach from a cave says the cooperating weather and falling water levels over the last few days have created conditions for extraction that won't continue if it rains again.

Chiang Rai Gov. Narongsak Osatanakorn says authorities are waiting for two big groups of volunteer divers to arrive later Saturday and Sunday, after which they'll be ready to begin the operation of bringing them out.

He says: "The plan that I've held on to from the beginning is that we have to bring the kids out and the determining factor of this plan is to have as little water as possible."

He says floodwaters have been drained as much as possible, "but if it rains and adds to it again, we don't know what other risk factors we will have to face." He also warned about higher carbon dioxide levels in the cave. — AP

July 7, 2018

The soccer coach trapped in a cave with 12 Thai boys has apologized to their parents in the first letter he and the team have sent out through divers.

The 25-year-old coach says: "To the parents of all the kids, right now the kids are all fine, the crew are taking good care. I promise I will care for the kids as best as possible. I want to say thanks for all the support and I want to apologize to the parents."

Rescuers say they won't immediately attempt an underwater evacuation because the boys have not yet learned adequate diving skills. But if heavy rains start again, divers will try to take the boys out right away.

The boys also wrote they are doing well and missing their families. — AP

July 6, 2018

SEAL commander Arpakorn Yookongkaew tells a news conference that the rescuer was working in a volunteer capacity and died during an overnight mission in which he was placing oxygen canisters. He says while underwater, the rescuer passed out and efforts to resuscitate him failed.

"Despite this, we will continue until we accomplish our mission," Arpakorn says.

Thai authorities are racing to pump out water from a flooded cave where 12 boys and their soccer coach have been trapped since June 23, before more rains are forecast to hit the northern region. — AP

A former Thai navy SEAL working as part of the effort to rescue a soccer team trapped in a cave dies from lack of oxygen, authorities say. — AP

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