UPDATE: Man had proper training and experience to navigate cave; - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Man had proper training and experience to navigate cave; in critical condition after cave rescue

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facebook: Chattanooga Hamilton County Rescue Service facebook: Chattanooga Hamilton County Rescue Service

UPDATE: It took nearly 12 hours to rescue a man trapped inside the Byer's Cave in Dade County. That man is in critical condition at a local hospital.

“The conditions in there, slippery, loose rocks, he stumbled down and fell in the pit,” said Assistant Fire Chief of Dade County Mountain Rescue, Shan Anderson. Those same slippery rocks made for a long 12 hours for the rescue crews at Fox Mountain. The man who fell had plenty of experience. He even came up with a whole team of others from Atlanta. They were nearly a half mile underground when he fell about 20 feet. For hours, rescue crews squeezed and navigated the narrow tunnels.

“A lot of narrow spots in this cave. We were fortunate enough to have someone who does a lot of mapping to work with us. Last night, he knew the cave real well, able to travel back to him quickly.” The fall was enough for some serious head, shoulder, and back injuries to the man in his 60's. Nearly 50 emergency personnel gathered at the opening to assist in the rescue. “Due to his location and the extensive system we had to set up, it took a while. We are thankful for the combined efforts of the surrounding area. Hamilton County Rescue, Walker County Rescue, even folks from Atlanta and Birmingham area.”

It didn't take the crews long to put in a rescue plan in action. A plan the assistant fire chief is thankful for. “We all worked together, saved a life, nobody here, none of the rescuers got injured doing it.”

The man was airlifted to a local hospital. The group had the proper training and permission to be in the cave.


PREVIOUS STORY: Officials say the man was rescued from the cave just before 6 a.m. Saturday. He was airlifted to a nearby hospital in critical condition. Stay with Channel 3 News as more information becomes available.


PREVIOUS STORY: According to Dade County Police a ongoing cave rescue is happening on Fox Mountain. Crews say it could take hours to get the man out of the cave.

A man in his sixties fell in Bradford's Cave on Friday evening. He was with two family members and they called 911. Officials say the man suffered a head injury, but do not know the extent of that injury at this time.

Chattanooga Cave Rescue and Walker Cave Rescue have been called in to assist the rescue.

Stay with Channel 3 as this story develops.

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