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Thread: NEWS FLASH- Man Stuck in Nutty Putty Cave

  1. #41
    Carbon Footprint Donor JP's Avatar
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    Possibly cardiac or respiratory arrest. Very sad.

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  3. #42
    Tragic ending: the man trapped in a cave dies
    November 26th, 2009 @ 6:47am
    By Anne Forester

    UTAH COUNTY -- After being trapped in the Nutty Putty Caves for more than 27 hours, John Jones died Thursday morning, shortly after midnight.

    Efforts to pull him from the cave were continuing when he passed away. The exact cause of his death is uncertain at this time, though officials say Jones had been experiencing difficulty maintaining consciousness and breathing. They say there are so many factors involved, that they just can't pose what the actual cause was.

    Rescuers had been communicating with Jones throughout Wednesday and into the night, but after several hours of not hearing from him, rescuers determined that he had died.

    Utah County Sheriff Sgt. Eldon Packer told KSL, "We were able to get somebody close enough to him that they were able to check some vital signs and other things and determine he had passed away."

    The area where Jones is trapped is very narrow -- about 10 inches high and 18 inches wide. Sheriff's deputies say they literally cannot get a rescuer in close enough to free Jones. They way Jones is positioned inside the cave is making it hard for crews to pull him straight out.

    "It's extremely difficult. The last several hours they've actually been using the pneumatic tools to try and break the rock away and other things so they can enlarge the hole enough that they can get in and actually remove him," Packer said.

    Because of the dangerous spot where Jones is lodged, rescuers left for the night to get some rest before returning in the morning to try and retrieve his body.

    "The individuals who were there, the terms that were used, is that we've never seen anything this technical, this tough," Packer said. said Jones had had trouble maintaining consciousness and breathing Wednesday night.

    Wednesday evening, rescue crews suffered a setback after nearly having Jones free.

    Cannon said Wednesday, "They had him to a level spot where he wasn't heading downhill with his head below his feet. During the course of that, they have a raising system to hold him in position, and one of the devices of that system failed, and Mr. Jones actually fell back to the area where he had been stuck for so long."

    Jones became trapped at about 9 p.m. Tuesday.

  4. #43
    That sucks.... I really thought they would get the guy out.

  5. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Iceaxe
    That sucks.... I really thought they would get the guy out.
    No Joke - Total shocker

  6. #45
    This is not the outcome I had expected. I feel bad for his family.

    This is a good reminder to all of us who like to go and do the unconventional be it caving, mountaineering, canyoneering etc If you feel for even a moment you are getting outside your ability....stop.....evaluate....and reconsider. we all take risks but we need to make sure that they are manageable risks and chosen well. If we don't have the skills to pull off what we want to do we need to take the time to get them (not saying he didn't).
    Tacoma Said - If Scott he asks you to go on a hike, ask careful questions like "Is it going to be on a trail?" "What are the chances it will kill me?" etc. Maybe "Will there be sack-biting ants along the way?"

  7. #46
    No kidding; I was stunned when I got up this morning and read that. What an awful thing for his family to have to deal with on Thanksgiving.

  8. #47
    Terrible news. I am shocked too. Condolences to the family. Not much you can say other then you feel for them.


  9. #48
    Zions the "s" is silent trackrunner's Avatar
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    shocked didn't expect it to be that serious until I saw the update last night that it became worse around 10pm. thought I was going to read a rescue story. Was hoping this morning would be a better update.

  10. #49
    Tragic. Really had high hopes for a happy ending to this.
    Even that guy in the news last night, who had been trapped in there 10 years ago, seemed sure that this would end well.
    Not that I'm blaming anyone, but I'm interested to know what device it was that failed last night and allowed him to slip back into his predicament after so many hours of struggle by so many rescuers.
    Condolences to family and friends.

  11. #50
    Zions the "s" is silent trackrunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don
    Not that I'm blaming anyone, but I'm interested to know what device it was that failed last night and allowed him to slip back into his predicament after so many hours of struggle by so many rescuers.
    edit: reports state it was an anchor failure.

    Condolences to family and friends not the best way or time. Know someone that lost a father on father's day in a tradic accident while he was driving to her home for a father's day party. Every year it was reminder of the worse day in her life. I hope that they can find peace eventually.

  12. #51
    Man dies after being trapped in cave nearly 28 hours
    November 26, 2009

    UTAH COUNTY -- There has been a tragic end to a Thanksgiving vacation caving expedition. Medical student John Jones was pronounced dead late last night after being trapped in a Utah County cave more than 27 hours.

    "We were able to send one of our cavers in close enough to him," said Sgt. Eldon Packer of the Utah County Sheriff's Office. "They were able to check him and determine he did pass away."

    Hundreds of search and rescue workers were in the midst of their second exhausting night, trying frantically to pry John Jones loose from Nutty Putty Cave. Just before midnight they realized he was dead.

    "We all were very optimistic and hopeful. But it became increasingly clear last night after he got re-stuck that there weren't very many options left," Jones' brother, Spencer Jones, 30, of San Francisco, told The Associated Press.

    The rescuers never saw much more than his feet and ankles. They were agonizingly close, but they just couldn't pull him out. Since Tuesday night, they struggled against the unforgiving topography of Nutty Putty Cave.

    "We've never seen anything this technical, this tough, to get in and get this person out," Packer said.

    The rescuers had to squeeze through narrow, twisting passageways. Jones' feet were sticking out, his head down, his body completely plugging a narrow tunnel 10 to 14 inches wide.

    "Where he is trapped, he is on a bend," Packer said. "So there's no way to really get a hold on him to be able to pull directly straight back."

    "It was very agonizing on this particular search," said State Sen. John Valentine, R-Orem, who has been a volunteer search and rescue worker for 30 years. The problem rescuers could not overcome was a small lip of rock at a critical bend in the narrow tunnel.

    "The lip basically captured the center part of his body," Valentine said, "so that as you pulled against it, you were pulling like against a fish hook. It would hang up just underneath the rib cage, against the lip that was in the narrow part of the cave."

    Rescuers bolted a pulley system into the rock for more leverage. That moved Jones a little ways, until a bolt failed, according to Sgt. Spencer Cannon of the Utah County Sheriff's Office.

    "A roof anchor gave way, causing him to fall back down into the area where he had been stuck previously," Cannon said.

    It's not known if that setback contributed to Jones' death. The trapped man had trouble breathing for hours. Sometime before midnight his vital signs stopped and rescuers exited the cave.

    "We thought he was in the clear and then when we got the news that he had slipped again. That's when we started to get scared," Spencer Jones said.

    "We have to be very careful," Cannon said. "It's very dangerous down there, as is evidenced by the fact that we've had, five years ago we had, two within a week almost in the exact same spot."

    He had a wife and 8-month-old daughter and was a second-year medical student at the University of Virginia.

    Spencer Jones said the family of five boys and two girls was close, and his brother was a wonderful person.

    "He would have done anything for you, so that's what makes it even harder. It's senseless," he said.

    After those earlier incidents, authorities considered closing the cave. Instead they allowed a caving group to manage it. Now the option of sealing it off is back on the table.

    "No one's in a position to hastily do that at this juncture, but we want to discuss that seriously tomorrow," said Kim Christy, assistant director of the Utah School & Institutional Trust Lands Administration, which owns the land where the cave is located.

    Meanwhile, officials still aren't sure how to recover the body and return it Jones' loved ones.

    "Part of the problem," Cannon said, "is that the only real options we have are those that were employed yesterday that just weren't working."

    Meetings are planned for Friday to discuss the future of the cave and the body recovery effort, a grim assignment for many people on this holiday weekend.

    http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=481&sid=8810404

  13. #52
    [b]Cops: Rescue equipment didn't fail
    Tragedy

  14. #53
    it's not fair to speculate on exactly what happened, but the fact an anchor failed only makes this even more tragic. here's a few shots from KSL, one showing the anchor. if this is in fact the anchor, there is obviously not any redundancy on the actual anchor itself.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  15. #54

  16. #55
    Zions the "s" is silent trackrunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarpeyBiggs
    it's not fair to speculate on exactly what happened, but the fact an anchor failed only makes this even more tragic. here's a few shots from KSL, one showing the anchor. if this is in fact the anchor, there is obviously not any redundancy on the actual anchor itself.

    When I saw the picture and read the description I wonder if the mechanical advantage force loads caused the failure (just speculation, seams a possible explanation)? I would think at times there were a lot force loads in that system.

    A couple months ago I was talking to Bo and he mentioned in Zion SAR they used two anchors: one for the raise/lower and another for the belay (not sure if that

  17. #56
    Sad and unfortunate. Carpy, that photo looks as if the bolt is loaded entirely in tension and none in shear. It wouldn't take too much force to pop it right out.

  18. #57
    [quote=trackrunner]
    When I saw the picture and read the description I wonder if the mechanical advantage force loads caused the failure (just speculation, seams a possible explanation)? I would think at times there were a lot force loads in that system.

    A couple months ago I was talking to Bo and he mentioned in Zion SAR they used two anchors: one for the raise/lower and another for the belay (not sure if that

  19. #58
    Trail Master
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    That bolt should have been put in the side wall with out a doubt. not to mention there should probly be 2 of them equalized on the side wall.

    I would think considering how crucial that main lift point is that redundancy would mean more then one bolt. Obviously the back up belay doesn't do much when it's crucial that there is no backward movement, they probly should have been using a static line for the belay (I'm just assuming it wasnt since he slid back what seems like a decent amount).

    Sad indeed, I had a feeling it might end that way. Because of that I couldn't believe all the crap comments that were posted up in a joking manner during the efforts. I always worry about getting into that perdiciment myself when I'm squeezing my way back into some tight twisting conveluted worm hole deep in the caves here in crawlarado, essentially on our own as help is way too far away. I can think of atleast 2 places I did not go because of this, and I've only been caving for a year.

  20. #59
    Zions the "s" is silent trackrunner's Avatar
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    Cops: Cave rescue equipment didn't fail

    [snip]The equipment used in the attempted rescue did not fail, Cannon said. It was a failure of the rock where the apparatus was anchored, he said. The rope system rescuers used was highly reliable and included redundant parts for extra safety, he said. [/snip]

    http://www.sltrib.com/news/ci_13873501

  21. #60
    Quote Originally Posted by trackrunner
    Cops: Cave rescue equipment didn't fail

    [snip]The equipment used in the attempted rescue did not fail, Cannon said. It was a failure of the rock where the apparatus was anchored, he said. The rope system rescuers used was highly reliable and included redundant parts for extra safety, he said. [/snip]

    http://www.sltrib.com/news/ci_13873501
    my interpretation is that this means the bolt pulled...

    again, speculation in this case is just that. i know some will find this demeaning to the SAR and the victim. i hope it does not come across like that.

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