Two French Cavers Rescued After Rising Water Traps Them Underground

January 22, 2013 / France, Europe
Entrance to the Baume des Crêtes' Cave, part of the Verneau Cave System.

Entrance to the Baume des Crêtes’ Cave, part of the Verneau Cave System. Photo by xofc/Wikipedia

Two French cavers were rescued this past weekend after rising water trapped them underground.

The cavers, a 50-year-old man and 20-year-old woman, had departed on Saturday on a trip to visit Verneau underground river system near Nans-sous-Sainte-Anne when they were surprised by a sudden rise of water.

When they did not return for their planned exit time, at 2:00 am on Sunday, the authorities were alerted and a rescue was organized around 1:00 pm later that day.

Luckily the trapped cavers, realizing their situation, had taken shelter and managed their time and strength until the cave rescue team arrived and brought them back to the surface unharmed at about 6:30 pm.

All told about a dozen cavers from Speleo-Secours Français, 20 firefighters and 20 police officers were involved in the rescue.

At over 30 kilometers (18 miles) long, the Verneau network is the longest cave system being explored in the eastern French province of Franche-Comté. The high water is being blamed on recent rains near the source of the system.

Plan spéléo-secours : les deux spéléologues sont sortis indemnes [] & 2013-01-20- grotte baudin – doubs (25) [Speleo-Secours Français]

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