Visitors flood local cave amid rescue effort in Thailand

6 months 1 week 3 days ago Monday, July 09 2018 Jul 9, 2018 Monday, July 09, 2018 5:21:00 PM CDT July 09, 2018 in News
By: Eric Graves, KOMU 8 Reporter

COLUMBIA - On Saturday, July 7 more than 600 people toured Connor's Cave in Rock Bridge Memorial State Park.

Tours are given at Connor's Cave every other weekend. On June 23, only 50 to 60 people toured the cave on Saturday.

Sarah Jones, a Missouri Parks & Recreation employee who gives tours of Connor's Cave, sees a correlation.

A soccer team was stranded in a network of caves in Thailand on June 23, and 20 days later, eight of the 13 people trapped inside the cave are out safely.

Jones said the Thailand cave rescue missions have peaked interest in guided tours at Connor's Cave. 

Jones said if anyone ever gets stuck in Connor's Cave help is available.

"If anything happens in the park, we have Boone County Fire Protection District that comes out and help us," Jones said. "There firefighters that come out they provide support and logistic to help us go in and take care of somebody and haul somebody out."

Jones laid out some ground rules for exploring caves and taking hikes on your own.

"Be prepared, wear good shoes, two sources of lights if you come into the cave and pay attention to the weather," Jones said.

Jones advised hikers to tell someone before they go, so if anything happens someone will know they are missing.

"With any hike whether you're going to the cave or you're taking a trail in the park make sure that you tell someone where you're going, how long you're going to be and when you expect to be back," Jones said.

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