Published: Fri, July 06, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Elon Musk plans to send engineers to help with cave rescue mission

Elon Musk plans to send engineers to help with cave rescue mission

The boys have been trapped for almost two weeks in a chamber in the Tham Luang cave complex.

The death of former Petty Officer 1st Class Saman Gunan early Friday morning during an underwater swim in the partly flooded cave struck a particularly deep chord with Thais, because he was a volunteer on a humanitarian mission that has riveted the nation's attention for two weeks.

He said that Saman's dive partner tried to revive him but could not, and his body was brought out of the cave.

Officials said his funeral would be sponsored by the Thai king.

Chiang Rai provincial governor Narongsak Osottanakorn, who is leading the rescue effort, yesterday described it as "a race against the water".

He said the oxygen line is also tied to a telephone line that will provide a channel of communication for the children. Levels in the area where the boys are trapped dropped from the usual 21% to 15%, authorities said. "I don't want to say it, but it could be a catastrophe", he said.

Friday's death of the former Seal underscores those risks. "We have a limited amount of time".

The 12 boys and their soccer coach trapped in a cave in Thailand may be brought out in the coming days, if it rains heavily.

But getting them out won't be easy.

Deputy Army Commander Chalongchai Chaiyakham said: "The top priority today is to fill the air inside".

On Friday rescue teams thrashed through dense forest hundreds of metres above the cave complex searching for an alternative extraction route.

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But the path to freedom is hugely unsafe for the boys, some of whom are unable to swim and have no scuba experience in an environment with low visibility that confounds even the most skilled.

The letter, signed by FIFA President Gianni Infantino, said the organization would like to invite the youngsters and their coach, should they be rescued in time and are healthy enough to travel, to the World Cup final in Russian Federation.

"We hope that, in some way, our words of support may help bring them a little peace and courage in these hard moments of uncertainty and concern".

The letter, signed by FIFA President Gianni Infantino, invited the team to the World Cup final in Russian Federation, should they be rescued in time and be healthy enough to travel.

He said that up to 200 people are exploring the hill to try to find a workable shaft.

Drilling raises concerns that parts of the cave could collapse on the boys.

Tesla and SpaceX boss Elon Musk is sending a team of engineers to help with the mission.

Rescue teams have been pumping millions of liters of water from the cave in an attempt to lower water levels to the extent that the boys can simply walk out.

Kian Kamluang, whose 16-year-old son, Pornchai, is in the cave, said she had thought there was a 50 percent chance that her son would be found. Authorities have not yet been able to connect a phone line, and a round trip through the winding, waterlogged tunnels between the boys and a rudimentary cave command post that now has a phone takes more than six hours. I sincerely hope that they will be able to join us at the final, which will undoubtedly be a wonderful moment of communion and celebration.

So far, none of the boys have died as a result of being trapped within the cave, as they have been captured on video by Thai navy SEALs looking malnourished but otherwise happy.

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