The cave is about 400 feet long with little visibility, sharp turns and tight passages. A spokesman for the Jackson County Emergency Management Agency,said Bratchley was with a small team of British divers who have been exploring the cave system for two or three days. When they called emergency Bratchley was unaccounted for after their last dive Tuesday afternoon. rescuers feared Wednesday’s operation would not end well. Cold water would have led to fatal hypothermia. Mr. Bratchley had unsuccessfully tried three times to find his way out, and decided he should save any remaining air for a potential rescue.
Bratchley’s rescuer was Edd Sorenson, a veteran technical cave diver from Marianna, Florida, who is internationally known for many high-profile cave rescues. The operation lasted about an hour. Bratchley was in good shape and refused medical treatment. Bratchley had only one request when he emerged from the water Wednesday night: “He wanted some pizza.”