Denver company creates interactive map to aid in rescue of Thailand soccer team in cave

DENVER — A company headquartered in Denver has created an interactive map of the cave that a boys soccer team is trapped in in Thailand, and provided it to Thai officials to help with the rescue.

Intermap is a leading provider of geospatial intelligence solutions and makes complex, digital maps for anything from risk assessment to engineering to land management, according to a press release from Sunday. And in early July, when the world learned that a boys soccer team had become trapped in an underground labyrinth of a cave in Thailand and couldn’t escape, the company made a map of the cave.

Called NEXTMap One, the high-resolution interactive map can identify elevation coordinates and “prioritize potential drilling points, identify drainage paths, provide a detailed and inter-active 3D model of the area, and determine alternate routes into the caves to help rescue the boys,” according to the press release. The map is more detailed than existing elevation data available from commercial or government sources, according to the release.

With help from its partners, Intermap passed NEXTMap One to the Thai Department of National Parks on June 27 for free to use during the rescue.

“Intermap was pleased to assist Thai officials in their search for the missing teens,” said Chairman and CEO Patrick Blott. “We’d like to congratulate the international rescue operation, the Thai Navy SEALs and the emergency responders in Thailand on their success in locating the boys. We hope that our data and modeling efforts will help bring a fast resolution to this crisis without further loss of life. We are happy to be playing a role and using our analytics to help local university staff craft useful solutions in supporting the rescue efforts and wish for a speedy rescue and the group to return to friends and family as soon as possible.”

As of Monday morning, eight members of the soccer team had been rescued and were safe and recuperating in a hospital, according to the Associated Press. Four boys and the team’s 25-year-old coach remain in the cave, which is threatened as annual monsoons start to enter the area. The boys are between the ages of 11 and 16. A former Thai SEAL died Friday while attempting to place air canisters along the passage where the boys were, according to the Associated Press.

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