Two members of the Thai schoolboy football team trapped in a cave for more than two weeks are now out, according to reports.
“Two kids are out. They are currently at the field hospital near the cave,” said Tossathep Boonthong, chief of Chiang Rai Province’s health department and part of the rescue team.
“We are giving them a physical examination. They have not been moved to Chiang Rai hospital yet,” Tossathep told Reuters.
Authorities said at a press conference Sunday morning in Chiang Rai province that they made the decision to rescue the boys as oxygen drops and the threat of monsoon rains approaches.
Due to the length of the journey out of the cave, officials said the first boy was expected to come out at 9 p.m. local time, which is 10 a.m. Sunday Eastern time. The officials said the operation could take two or three days.
At 10 a.m. local time, 13 foreign divers and five Thai SEALs entered the cave to begin the operation. Two divers will escort each of the kids out of the cave.
“We have a fraction of a second to help them come out,” provincial Gov. Narongsak Osatanakorn said.
It will take five hours for rescuers to reach the boys from the entrance of the cave, and six hours to bring back the boys, including an hour break time. Ten divers headed to chamber 9, where the boys are located, while the others will be located along the difficult route out of the cave system.