Thai Cave Rescuers Race Against Time As Oxygen Levels Drop


Pressure is mounting on Thailand cave rescuers as authorities try and devise a rescue plan to get the 12 boys and their coach out of the flooded cave in Northern Thailand after the death of a former navy diver and oxygen levels begin to drop.

Initially the rescuers debated on leaving the boys in the cave for four months and bring them supplies until the waters subsided but if the weather got worse, the caves could flood even more.

Another option was to train each boy how to dive, but officials aren't sure of that option either considering a Navy seal diver died trying to bring the boys oxygen and supplies.  Most of the boys trapped in the cave don't know how to swim so each boy would have to be taught to swim and then learn how to dive.

Now the rescue team is faced with another problem as they realize that the oxygen levels have dropped 15%, a level that medics say poses a serious risk of hypoxia, the same condition that causes altitude sickness.

"We can no longer wait for all conditions (to be ready) because of the oppressive situation," Thai medic Yoo-kongkaew told journalists Friday.

"We originally thought the young boys could stay safe inside the cave for quite a long time but circumstances have changed. We have limited amount of time." He did not say how long they could survive with current oxygen levels, but he said getting more oxygen piped into the boys was top priority.

Not only is oxygen an issue, but according to weather reports in the area they are expecting the area to get hit with heavy rainfall this weekend.  

Thailand's monsoon season runs from July to October and even though the past few days have been relatively dry, their rainy months are just getting started.

The boys and their coach entered the cave nearly two weeks ago and were unable to navigate their way back out when floodwaters started filling the cave and forcing them to take shelter on a rocky ledge.

The operation now involves dozens of Thai Navy SEALs, experts, volunteer divers from around the world and even US Billionaire and inventor Elon Musk is going to send engineers from SpaceX to see if they could help get the boys out.

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