THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Navy Seals vow to add cave diving to their list of skills

BANGKOK: Skills unfamiliar to Thai Navy Seals but key to the successful rescue of the 13 ‘Wild Boars’ extracted from Tham Luang cave will be added to the training regimen of the Navy’s elite unit to better prepare them for unexpected situations.


By Bangkok Post

Friday 13 July 2018, 08:44AM


Seals of the navy’s Underwater Demolition Team struggle through a muddy training course during the annual 120-hour Hell Week at the conclusion of their one-year brutal basic training. Cave diving is about to be added to the schedule. Photo: File photo by Jetjaras na Ranong

Seals of the navy’s Underwater Demolition Team struggle through a muddy training course during the annual 120-hour Hell Week at the conclusion of their one-year brutal basic training. Cave diving is about to be added to the schedule. Photo: File photo by Jetjaras na Ranong

The 17 days spent in the treacherous cave complex in Chiang Rai’s Mae Sai district not only tested the Seals’ strength, but has prompted them to think about arming themselves with the skills needed to navigate flooded, dark and murky passageways.

“Seals need cave-diving training,” Naval Special Warfare Command chief Rear Admiral Apakorn Yukongkaew said yesterday (July 12) when asked to name a priority for his Seal unit after returning from the cave rescue mission.

The 127 present and former ‘Seals’ – a nickname given to those attached to the Underwater Demolition Team (UDT) – handled the risks and pressure at Tham Luang well, but they still needed to be guided by world-renowned cave divers who also joined the rescue operations.

“Many simply did not know what to do,” when they first saw conditions inside the cave, Lt Cdr Khai Tochaiphum, a former Seal instructor who also joined the rescue mission, recalled, adding that none had cave-diving experience. Yet the rescue proceeded smoothly because it was so well-managed, he said.

Before the successful conclusion, the Seals and overseas rescuers were faced with decreasing oxygen levels and fears of further flooding triggered by downpours that have fallen on northern Thailand since last Wednesday (July 4).

“We did better than expected. It’s a victory,” Royal Thai Fleet commander Adm Rangsarit Sattayanukun said as he welcomed the Seals and 32 Navy personnel at the Navy-owned U-Tapao airport in Rayong.

Adm Apakorn is renowned as a no-nonsense Seal chief.

He said yesterday that he is courageous enough to encounter difficult situations and always expects his men to complete the jobs they are assigned.

Laguna Golf Phuket

“But there’s one person I always listen to,” he said, referring to his wife Sasiwimon.

“Her advice is useful and she has always been a morale booster for me.”

Ms Sasiwimon worked behind the scenes during the Tham Luang rescue, liaising with experts from abroad and updating the Thai Navy Seal Facebook page which now attracts nearly 2 million followers.

“My wife has solid adventure experience,” Adm Apakorn said of her previous trips to Mount Everest and Antarctica.

Adm Apakorn earlier on Wednesday (July 11) met experts from SpaceX, the American aerospace firm, who donated a mini-submarine for use in the rescue mission. He offered it for use in the rescue but it was rejected.

“The Navy believes it could be helpful and practical in future rescue efforts and will conduct further testing in Bangkok in the near future,” read a tweet from a user called Than R, quoting Adm Apakorn.

SpaceX founder Elon Musk tweeted back he was “glad to hear that”.

Read original story here.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Tour boats blamed for widespread reef damage

Timo hit the nail on the head, and all the warnings of environmental degradation continuously fall o...(Read More)


Chinese Consul General meets Phuket Governor to discuss tourist safety

"“I am very happy to hear that the Thai government has made the safety of Chinese tourists a ...(Read More)


Governor pushes water-shortage solutions

"“We will not charge residents any costs for emergency water provdied,” the governor assure...(Read More)


Welcoming HMAS Canberra: Australian Navy head to Phuket for training and community activities

"Pascale one wonders why the cereal(sic) is allowed. Emails to the Editor get no reply. I think...(Read More)


Welcoming HMAS Canberra: Australian Navy head to Phuket for training and community activities

"talking is so much easier.Always the same," hope to see you there, getting your hands dir...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

"Col Santi explained, “Lt Gen Pornsak learned that local residents in Phuket were now in trou...(Read More)


Hunted seastead couple ‘traced to Tarutao’

Fake news by thai authorities. The US-Thai couple didn't build, tugged, and anchored the floati...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

I thought the Gov said there was NO drought so why is the Army turning up with water tankers. Don...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

Finally army has taken over from a governor who still denies there is a water crisis on Phuket. Besi...(Read More)


Mains water supply outage announced

Interesting mental output at 5.16. Fascinating with all those dots and half finished sentences,but w...(Read More)