Rescuers pulled an American researcher out of a Turkish cave on Monday, more than a week after he became seriously ill more than 3,000 feet below its entrance, said the Speleological Federation of Turkey.
Teams from across Europe had rushed to Morca cave in southern Turkey’s Taurus Mountains to aid Mark Dickey, a 40-year-old experienced caver who became seriously ill with stomach bleeding on Sept. 2. He was on an expedition to map the cave, which is the country’s third deepest.
Dickey was too frail to climb out himself, so rescuers carried him with the help of a stretcher, making frequent stops at temporary camps set up along the way.
The American was first treated inside the cave by a Hungarian doctor who went down the cave on Sept. 3. Doctors and rescuers then took turns caring for him. The cause of Dickey’s illness was not clear.
An experienced caver, Mark Dickey, 40, started vomiting on Sept. 2 because of stomach bleeding while on an expedition with a handful of others in the Morca cave in southern Turkey’s Taurus Mountains, one of the deepest in the world, according to experts.
A rescue operation began Saturday afternoon with doctors, paramedics and experienced cavers from across Europe rushing to help. They set up small medical base camps at various levels along the shaft, providing Dickey an opportunity to rest during the slow and arduous extrication.
Turkish authorities said there were 190 personnel from eight countries taking part in the operation, 153 of them search and rescue experts.
The most challenging part of the rescue operation was widening the narrow cave passages to allow stretcher lines to pass through at low depths, Yusuf Ogrenecek of the Speleological Federation said.
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