A team of Thai Navy SEALs is coordinating an operation that risks getting out of hand as more and more volunteers arrive, and the media circus covering the drama grows.
"The kids are still are able to walk around, play around comfortably", he said.
With heavy rains forecasted for the weekend, the Governor dismissed the idea of an immediate rescue, saying that efforts will be initiated only if the was the risk to rescuers' lives were minimal. The diver's death has put emphasis on the perilous situation the boys are in.
Officials said Friday oxygen levels are down to around 15%, and an air hose has been installed to pump more inside the cave to ensure levels don't fall further. Players from teams including England and Sweden have recorded good luck video messages for the trapped boys, and Federation Internationale de Football Association has invited the 13 to the World Cup final should they be rescued in time and are healthy enough to travel.
Many fans on social media said the boys deserved the World Cup trophy for the way they have handled their ordeal.
Thai authorities say a former navy SEAL working to rescue boys trapped in cave has died from lack of oxygen. We can only use the words "try" and "do our best.'" A plan to install an oxygen cable in the chamber also had to be abandoned due to difficulties in routing the cable through the cave's labyrinth of caverns and narrow passageways.More news: Merkel's Bavarian ally hopeful SPD coalition partner will back migrant centres
Earlier on Saturday Thai Navy SEALS published touching notes scrawled by the trapped footballers to their families, who are waiting for them agonisingly close by outside the cave entrance. "We want to keep the headcount minimal, but we'll always have four people with the kids and we'll work hard to bring as many oxygen tanks into that area as we can".
Finnish volunteer diver Mikko Paasi, a long-term resident of Thailand, said Kunan's death had changed the mood on the ground and made real for rescuers just how unsafe the mission had become.
One of Kunan's longtime friends, Sgt. Anuram Kaewchano, told CNN he was shocked to learn the news. "I will have to use the word "try" here because I can not make a commitment that something like this won't happen again".
"Definitely, you can feel it that it has an effect, but we're moving on. Our last trip together was to Malaysia". According to an internal USA government report obtained by ABC News, the Royal Thai Navy, supported by divers from the United Kingdom, the United States and other nations, has briefed Thai military leadership, interior ministry officials and the provincial governor on a proposed operation to evacuate the 12 boys and their coach from the miles-long cave in Chiang Rai province alongside experienced divers, in what is being called a "buddy dive".
Rescuers have been unable to extend a hose pumping oxygen all the way to where the boys are, but have brought them some oxygen tanks.
Seal commander Mr Yookongkaew also stressed to a press conference on Friday that "things have changed" and there is only a "limited amount of time".More news: Amazon Prime Day: All you need to know
Tech billionaire Elon Musk has sent a team of engineers to Thailand to see if they can help in the rescue effort.
King Maha Vajiralongkorn thanked those involved in finding the soccer team nicknamed the Wild Boars.
The discovery of the boys inside the cave by British divers on Monday "was just a small victory", he said.
Global rescuers team prepare to enter the cave where a young soccer team and their coach trapped by flood waters.
The cave complex is regularly flooded during the monsoon season which lasts until September or October.
CNN's Kocha Olarn reported from Chiang Rai, Euan McKirdy reported from Hong Kong while Lauren Said-Moorhouse reported from London.More news: With Russia out, who will home fans back?
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