Queensland, Australia – A 46-year-old woman was assaulted by a salt-water crocodile at the Thornton Beach which is part of the Daintree National Park. She and a girlfriend were taking a walk by the beach when they decided to get into the water on Sunday.
It was around 10:30 P.M. and the victim was in waist deep water when she was attacked. According to rescuers, her friend tried to pull her out of the water, but the crocodile was too strong, so she decided to run to the nearest store for help. When she was back with other people, there was no sight of the victim. A search team has been looking for the woman, but they all think she is already dead.
“You can’t legislate against human stupidity,” MP Warren Entsch said on Monday. “This is a tragedy but it was avoidable. There are warning signs everywhere up there.”
Croc attacks are normal
Crocodile attacks are very common in places where the animal and people live together. According to specialists, only 6 species of crocs are dangerous to humans, the Nile and the salt-water crocodile top the list, followed by the mugger which has killed a lot of people in India.
It is impossible to know how many people have died at the jaws of these predators because the communities that live in their territory are usually very rural and disconnected from civilization. However in the United States, alligators and crocs inhabit the Everglades in Florida, and they have been accused of a lot of attacks over the years. For an adult human, a crocodile smaller than 2metres (6.6ft) is not a threat, but for children and pets, they are all dangerous.
Since humans were the ones that decided to move to their territories, no one can blame them for the attacks. In other words, when someone is attacked by a croc or an alligator, it was probably that person’s fault. Because of this, areas where these reptiles live are full with signs, and local people are used to warn tourists about the dangers of wild life.
The Nile man-eating crocodile is the most infamous of them all. With 275 to 745 attacks a year, this croc has earned a fearsome reputation, but it is not like the reptiles go inland to hunt people. Along the Nile, there are lots of people that depend on the river to survive which makes them easy prey. On the other hand, only 30 salt-water croc attacks are reported every year and 50 percent of them are fatal.
Authorities have joined efforts with wild-life experts to create a set of rules to follow when people visit croc infested territories, and the first one is to avoid this kind of places. In fact, the key to survive an attack is to avoid it.
The second rule is to be alert. Since these reptiles are reported to be 2, 3, or even 8 metres long, logic would say they are animals easy to spot, but this is a wrong belief. Crocodiles ambush their preys and they are very good at it, especially at hiding their presence. So if anyone is walking around an infested river or lake, it is a bad idea to put arms or legs into the water. It is also good to avoid muddy water and thick vegetation since these two provide a perfect cover for an expert hunter.
In the case of sighting a crocodile, the right thing to do is to stay away from it. They usually attack when they are scared or to defend their territory, so slowly it is better to walk away from it and never lose it from sight. It is important to also take into account that they also attack humans when they are hungry, and they love hunting in the evening and at dusk.
Also, a good idea to keep crocs away is to make noise. They usually get scared when they hear unfamiliar noises, so it is important to let them know that there is someone around.
Although chances of surviving a croc attack are scarce, there is still some good news. Hopefully, it is understood that if anyone gets into an area full of crocs there is a palpable chance of getting attacked, however, everything will depend on the situation.
Crocodiles can’t really run. They do it at 10 km/h and get tired very quickly, so if they attack on land it would be easy to run away from them.
If it is too late to react, again, the most important thing to is to keep calmed. Most of the times, both alligators and crocodiles attack as a defensive measure which means they will bite and then let go. If this is the case, there is a chance to get away from the animal as fast as possible. However, if the animal is actually hungry, the only thing to do is to defend oneself. Hitting the eyes, nostrils and under the tongue has proven to be effective to make the croc stop the attack.
If surviving the attack, going to a hospital is a must priority and it has to be quick. A lot of bacteria live in a croc’s mouth which could lead to infections.
Having all this in mind, it is easy to understand why the woman was attacked, and it should be a reminder of how dangerous is to go on vacations to a place like that. It is something that must be thought twice.
Source: The Guardian