Draining water out of the Tham Luang cave has become the biggest challenge encountered by search and rescue as well as support officials.
Heavy rains in the Tham Luang-Khun Nam Nangnon national park on Wednesday night have driven up the water level in the cave rapidly that the existing water pumps cannot cope with. An official involved in draining water admitted that the water situation in the cave on Thursday was the worst ever since search and rescue operation was mounted on Sunday with all the ponds and wells inside the cave overflowing.
Besides rain water, water also seeps out of the soaked cave floor all the time along with water that drops from the limestone ceiling of the cave like a leaked faucet.
Yet, draining water out of the flooded cave remains an option to allow SEAL frogmen and foreign cave divers to get deeper into the cave to reach their destination – the so-called Pattaya Beach where the missing boys and their soccer coach were believed to seek refuge.
Hence, effort to drain the water was adjusted on Thursday with a truck to drill artesian water wells being brought in to search for underground wells at the cave entrance.
Mr Natthapong Hawchaturapiporn, president of the Artesian Water Association, said that if an underground water source could be located it would help drain water out of the cave by means of using air pressure to push water into the underground water source.