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The untold story of the daring cave divers who saved the Thai soccer team

Discussion in 'Search and Rescue' started by kelemvor, Mar 6, 2019.

  1. ToneNQ

    ToneNQ ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Australia
    I can thoroughly recommend the book 'Against all odds' by Challen and Harris, it's a great read. The 'Speaking Sidemount' podcast is also a great discussion.

    There's also some TV coverage and interviews on YouTube. One has the Thai commander who spoke in awe of the Brita and how quickly they moved through the caves, and how much the Seals struggled in comparison. John Volanthen and Ric Stanton, who found the boys, and the two other British divers, Chris and Jason (I think) who also dived the boys out. On of the TV shows includes the American guys that did the equipment with the positive pressure masks, which were the critical piece according to Harris. And the Thai pump crew that were shifting the water out.

    From what I've read the Brits didn't need immunity. It was Dr Harris that was sedating the children and approving them to dive, so he carried the negligence risk. If any children died due to sedation error it's manslaughter. The Brits simply had to trust his judgement and his doses for the pop-up shots, so they had no criminal culpability.
  2. Umuntu

    Umuntu Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Traveller
    Thanks for sharing @Dr Simon Mitchell.

    I love those pics of your habitats !
    Are they industrial chemical containers that have been inverted and access cut into the bottom ? That would be a novel use for them. And a bit cosy.

    I can see how the bouys would balance the habitats mid-water column, but that would need adjusting every time someone climbed in or out ...

    Sorry for going off topic ...
  3. Dr Simon Mitchell

    Dr Simon Mitchell ScubaBoard Supporter Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    Hello Umuntu,

    Yes they are some sort of liquid container with the bottoms cut out. They serve multiple purposes, including containers in which gear was freighted over from Oz.

    The buoys are only to make them neutral for maneuvering them into the cave. They are actually anchored and filled with gas so are seriously buoyant once deployed properly. I have uploaded a light painting stitch that shows that part of the shaft in brighter light (I learned this technique from the master (Pete Mesley) and am still getting the hang of it). In that image you can make out the black anchoring lines on the 30m habitat that are attached to bolts drilled into the rock. There were habitats at 40, 30, 17 and 7m.

    Yes, very cosy but necessary! The deepest I did was 125m with 3 hours of deco which I did all in water rather than use the habitats, but I have to say that much longer than that in 6 degrees (even with suit heating) you would have to seriously consider using the habitats. The shallower ones were inflatable bags (see the other uploaded picture) that were a bit more spacious. Lots of stuff going to this habitat including suit heating cable from surface, voice comms from surface, a buzzer cable (another back up form of comms). You can see some video showing a short segment of getting one of the deeper habitats into the cave, followed by some commentary from Harry and Craig during their 4 hours in the 7m inflatable and more roomy habitat here:

    Simon M

    16m habits.jpg
    Schwob, Umuntu, Miyaru and 1 other person like this.
  4. Umuntu

    Umuntu Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Traveller
    @Dr Simon Mitchell , Thanks for sharing.

    "Luxuriously appointed accommodation" indeed !

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