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Rescuers free man trapped in Brecon Beacons cave for two days | Wales

An injured man has been rescued from a cave in south Wales after being trapped for greater than two days not less than 300 metres from the floor. The man was introduced out of Ogof Ffynnon Ddu in the Brecon Beacons at round 7.45pm on Monday following a 54-hour ordeal.

After being lifted to the floor, he was clapped and cheered by rescuers earlier than being helped right into a cave rescue Land Rover to be transported right down to a ready ambulance.

The man, described as an skilled caver, grew to become trapped on Saturday at round 1pm after a fall. His accidents are stated to be non-life threatening, however had been believed to incorporate a damaged jaw, leg, and spinal accidents.

Gary Evans, the emergency providers liaison officer, advised reporters: “The casualty is doing remarkably well, if you consider how long he’s been in the cave, how long he’s been in a stretcher – he’s doing very well indeed.

“He’s being assessed at the moment and we’ll know more in a short while.”

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Asked how he felt in regards to the success of the operation, Evans added: “We’re absolutely delighted. We’re delighted because it was a difficult rescue and we’re delighted because the casualty has done really well considering what’s happened.”

Gary Mitchell, South and Mid Wales Cave Rescue Team’s floor controller, stated: “To get that news that he’s finally out, he’s on the surface and being well looked after, is clearly ecstatic for all of us.”

Nearly 250 volunteer cave rescuers helped free him from the cave community, one of many UK’s longest.

As the rescue close to the hamlet of Penwyllt entered its second day yesterday, situations above floor deteriorated, with thick fog and drizzle creating a depressing ambiance on the mountain.

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But spirits remained excessive in the South Wales Caving Club (SWCC) headquarters, lower than a mile from the doorway to the cave, the place dozens of rescuers from throughout Wales and England united in the mammoth effort, and huddled round scorching drinks and meals.

Throughout the day, groups of about 30 at a time set off from the caving membership HQ up the mountain to the cave entrance to take over from their colleagues as they emerged into daylight. Some had been beneath floor for 12-hour stints.

A rescue team wait on the surface near the Ogof Ffynnon Ddu cave system in the Brecon Beacons.
A rescue workforce wait on the floor close to the Ogof Ffynnon Ddu cave system in the Brecon Beacons. Photograph: Gareth Phillips/The Guardian

By the late afternoon, Peter Francis, 74, a consultant of South and Mid Wales Cave Rescue Team (SMWCRT), reported: “We can now confirm that the man has multiple injuries, but they are not life threatening. We’re very optimistic now – it’s a matter of time before we get him out.

“He’s warm, he’s stable. The doctor with him is monitoring him the whole time and we’re not worried about him getting hypothermia.”

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Two hours later, Gary Mitchell, floor controller for SMWCRT, stated the man was in “good spirits”, including: “We’re nearing the final phases of the operation. We’re about to deploy 20 more rescuers, and medics are now making their way underground to him … The important thing now is to get the casualty the care he needs, which is getting him to a hospital.”

Some of the cavers who had travelled to the scene had been concerned in the 2018 rescue of 12 boys and their soccer coach from flooded caves in northern Thailand, 17 days after they bought trapped underground, as captured in the brand new documentary The Rescue. The rescuers this time round had been from Gloucester, the Midlands, Derbyshire, Somerset and south-west England.

Along an uphill monitor, the unassuming entrance to the cave masks an unlimited community, described by one caver as “intestinal”. A Western Brecons mountain rescue pickup truck was parked exterior the doorway for a lot of the day inside a cordon that was widened over time. A stretcher lay in wait for the injured caver.

Paul Taylor, SMWCRT spokesman, stated the injured caver was doing effectively. “He’s doing pretty good as far as I understand. He’s been talking throughout, so that’s something,” he stated. Taylor stated it was the longest cave rescue ever undertaken in Wales; the earlier document was 41 hours.

The groups, together with medical doctors, needed to work to safe a protected route out of the cave alongside which the injured man could possibly be evacuated on a stretcher. They used a system referred to as Cavelink to speak contained in the caves, which permits groups on the floor to transmit textual content messages by the rock, with out cable, to a receiver underground.

The caves had been found by the SWCC in 1946, in line with Natural Resources Wales, and comprise streams and waterfalls. The system, whose deepest level is about 275 metres (902ft), will be accessed by cavers with a allow from the membership.

The entrance to the Ogof Ffynnon Ddu cave system.
The entrance to the Ogof Ffynnon Ddu cave system. Photograph: Gareth Phillips/The Guardian

The on-line information from SWCC for Ogof Ffynnon Ddu, the Cave of the Black Spring, stated: “The through trip from the top to the bottom entrance remains a classic in the UK, and its approximately 61km (40 miles) of passages provide everything from huge chambers, beautiful formations, to yawning chasms and thundering river passages. The routes through the cave are too numerous to mention.”

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