Rescuers working to save a Thai youth soccer team trapped deep inside a flooded cave are using an Israeli technology to maintain communication with the 12 boys and their coach.
Maxtech Networks told The Times of Israel that its system is providing a voice, data, and video link to the boys who have been stuck in the cave for nearly two weeks.
The boys, aged 11 to 16, and their 25-year-old coach entered the sprawling Tham Luang Nang Non cave in the northern province of Chiang Rai after a soccer game on June 23. They were found by two British rescue divers on July 2, nine days after they disappeared.
In the Israeli system, a string of small devices, similar to handheld radios, pass wireless communications between each other, enabling a link in places regular radios won’t work, such as where there are major obstacles blocking the line-of-sight between the two ends of the line.
It took 19 of the devices to complete the link to the boys in the cave. They have enough battery power for 10 hours’ use at a time.
After an Israeli acquaintance who runs a rescue team in Thailand and was involved in the early efforts to find the boys contacted Hanuni, Maxtech employee Yuval Zalmanov flew out to Thailand on June 25, bringing the equipment with him in a suitcase.
“We are happy to be able to help,” Hanuni said and added he expects an attempt to extract the children to be made in the coming days. Others have said it may take weeks or months till such an attempt would be made.
Following their success in Thailand, Hanuni said he now wants to set up a quick response team, equipped with their technology, which would be ready to travel to emergencies all over the world.