Second Phase Of Thailand Rescue Pulls 4 More Boys From Cave

Elon Musk posted videos of the 'kid-size submarine' he's sending to help save the boys trapped in a cave in Thailand

Rescue mission chief Narongsak Osotanakorn said Monday's rescue operation was two hours shorter than the previous one after authorities reviewed the process to make it sharper.

The eighth boy has now emerged from the cave where a soccer team and their coach have been trapped in Thailand.

"The water level is not worrisome ... yesterday's rain did not affect water levels inside the cave". Multiple calls to senior government officials and military personnel leading the rescue operation rang unanswered Monday evening.

The premier arrived late Friday at the mouth of Tham Luang cave.

"No hugging" or "touching" would be allowed between the boys and their relatives, however, until all medical tests are completed, the official said.

The four who were rescued previously were taken to a hospital in Chiang Rai for evaluation.

The operation is set to resume on Tuesday to evacuate the remaining five.

But rescuing the remaining five people, which includes the boys' 25-year-old soccer coach, could take more than one operation, Narongsak said.

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The extraction of the four on Monday followed a similar pattern to the previous day, with the youngsters emerging in quick succession just before nightfall after navigating a treacherous escape route of more than four kilometres. It was unclear who was inside the ambulance or the helicopter.

The second day of the underground rescue attempt began at 11:00am local time (2:00pm AEST).

The four boys pulled from the cave Sunday in an urgent and risky operation that involved them diving through the cave's tight and twisting passages were in good health. Hopefully we will have good news in a few hours. It takes several hours.

The rescued boys are being kept in sterilized isolation units at a nearby hospital, which prohibits physical contact, and their parents have not been told they're safe.

The fate of the boys and their coach has gripped Thailand and drawn global media attention.

"The water level is low".

The search and rescue operation has riveted people both in Thailand and internationally, with journalists from across the globe travelling to this town along the border with Myanmar to report on the ordeal.

Rescue workers in Thailand on Monday brought four boys out of a flooded cave where a 12-member soccer squad and their coach were trapped for more than two weeks, taking the total number rescued to eight.

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The mission was paused overnight on Sunday for air tanks to be replaced. There was no word on the condition of the fifth boy brought out earlier on Monday. Each round trip from the rescue camp to the rocky shelf where the group is trapped takes about 11 hours.

Getting to and from where the boys are has been an exhausting round trip, even for the experienced divers.

He later visited the eight rescued boys at the Chiangrai Prachanukroh Hospital.

Rescuers are also in a race against time, with weather forecasters warning heavy rain could hit the area on Monday afternoon and continue through the week. All four boys are being treated at a hospital in Chiang Rai, the nearest major city.

Thailand's Meteorological Department said there was a 60 percent chance of rain Monday with thunderstorms forecast throughout the week.

Asked whether the remaining four "Wild Boars" team and their coach would come out at the same time in the next rescue effort, he said: "It depends on the plan".

Authorities have not confirmed the identities of the first four boys freed.

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