Authorities say an experienced diver who was reported missing in a Tennessee cave has been found alive.
The Chattanooga Hamilton County Rescue Service posted on its Facebook page that the diver was brought out of the cave Wednesday night and was safe on the surface. Multiple rescue crews participated in the effort.
Jackson County Emergency Management Agency spokesman Derek Woolbright told news outlets that about 1:15 a.m. Wednesday, a group of experienced divers reported that one of its members had not returned from a dive. He said they went back in to find him but could not.
A diver safely retrieved Josh Bratchley from the Mill Pond Cave system near Gainesboro in Jackson County, about 65 miles northeast of Nashville, authorities said. Bratchley — who was made a member of the Order of the British Empire in December for his role in the Thai rescue last summer — was in good shape and refused medical treatment, the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.
Bratchley was with a small team of British divers who have been exploring the cave system for two or three days, said Ethan Burris, a spokesman for the Jackson County Emergency Management Agency.