A British diver who helped save 12 schoolboys trapped in a cave in Thailand has himself been rescued from a flooded tunnel in the US after more than a day underground.

Josh Bratchley had been exploring a cave in Jackson County, Tennessee, with a group of divers from the UK.

He failed to return to the surface with the rest of a party after they emerged at around 3pm on Tuesday.

Image: Rescuers entered the 400ft cave system to reach the British diver

Emergency services were alerted and expert divers from Arkansas and Florida were flown in and entered the 400ft cave system and successfully brought the diver to the surface at around 7pm on Wednesday.

"He was awake, alert and oriented," rescue official Derek Woolbright told a news conference.


"His only request when he got to the surface was that he wanted some pizza."

Boys from the under-16 soccer team trapped inside Tham Luang cave covered in hypothermia blankets
Image: Boys from a football team became trapped inside Tham Luang cave in Thailand last June

Edd Sorenson, a cave specialist for the Chattanooga Hamilton County Rescue Service who rescued the Briton, said when he found the diver, he was waiting "as calm as could be" in an air pocket.

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"He just said 'thank you, thank you. Who are you?' I said 'I'm Edd Sorenson', and he said 'I should have known. I saw the sidewinder'."

Rescue operation is complete after three days of heroic efforts by divers, with all of those trapped carried out alive.
Image: The 12 youngsters and their coach were rescued by diving experts from the UK

Mr Sorenson said: "We had a nice talk, while he started to gear back up. He had all his equipment off and was sitting in the mud.

I just gave a play-by-play what we're going to do. I said I'm going to basically move your hand from place to place, trying to take the thinking out of it.

"But it really wasn't necessary. His mental state was impeccable."

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