Injured speleologist is rescued after being stuck underground for eight hours

Fortunately for him, this 64-year-old caver did not descend alone into the depths of the Aven de Noël cave, in Bidon, in the Ardèche. His friends were able to warn the firefighters when he fell during the exploration. The rescue operation, made difficult by the layout of the premises, however lasted 8 hours.

About fifty rescuers, including 15 members of the French Speleo Rescue, were mobilized. They had to find a way to reach the victim, unable to extricate himself from the deep cavity in which she had injured herself.

A broken ankle

This involved crossing two successive wells, 30 and 90 meters deep, before traveling a hundred meters to reach the speleologist. Once near him, the teams realized he was suffering from a broken ankle, which forced them to take more precautions.

According to information from France 3, a hot spot system was set up in particular to maintain the injured person’s body temperature throughout the ascent. The course was divided into several stages and the speleologist finally reached the surface around 1 a.m. on Tuesday, while the firefighters had arrived on site the day before around 5 p.m. The victim was immediately transferred to the hospital in Bagnols-sur-Cèze, in the Gard.

Each year, the rescue services generally record one or two such accidents in the cave of Christmas Aven. The teams working in this type of cavity are trained to face often long operations. In 2019, in the Pyrénées-Orientales, a caver got stuck 350 meters deep in the Fig tree cave, after a fall. His rescue lasted more than 20 hours.

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