Explorer freed after 12 days trapped in Germany's deepest cave

Updated: 

dpa


A cave explorer has finally been freed after suffering head injuries in an accident deep underground nearly two weeks ago.

Johann Westhauser, 52, was carried by mountain rescuers to a helicopter outside the Riesending cave near Marktschellenberg, southern Germany on Thursday.

He was injured on 8 June while nearly 1,000 metre (3,280 feet) underground in the Riesending cave system in the Alps near the Austrian border.

According to the Daily Mail, more than 200 cave rescue specialists were involved in the operation.

The first words Mr Westhauser spoke were: "I am feeling OK."

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Raw: Man Rescued From Germany's Deepest Cave


He was strapped to a stretcher and carried out of a network of tunnels.

A heating system and neck brace was attached to him to avoid further brain swelling.

Andreas Baecker, a member of the Bavarian mountain rescue service, told Bloomberg: "This has been the most complex and extensive cave rescue operation ever."

Westhauser was part of a group of explorers. When he was injured, one of his companions climbed to the surface to raise the alarm.

The entrance of the cave is 1,800 metres high in the Bavarian Alps. It took crews 12 days to bring him to the surface.

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