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World Australia and New Zealand 20 Mar 2017 Australian teen &lsq ...

Australian teen ‘punches crocodile’ in head during late night swim, escapes

AFP
Published Mar 20, 2017, 8:29 am IST
Updated Mar 20, 2017, 8:29 am IST
The 18-year-old suffered extensive injuries to his left arm after he was attacked in Johnstone River.
Crocodiles are common in Australia’s north where numbers have increased since the introduction of protection laws in 1971. (Photo: Pixabay)
 Crocodiles are common in Australia’s north where numbers have increased since the introduction of protection laws in 1971. (Photo: Pixabay)

Sydney: An Australian teenager is lucky to be alive, paramedics said on Sunday, after he reportedly escaped the jaws of a crocodile by punching it in the head during a late night swim in a river.

The 18-year-old, named in local media as Lee de Paauw, suffered extensive injuries to his left arm after he was attacked in Johnstone River on Australia’s northeastern coast on Sunday morning, the Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) said.

 

He had jumped into the river as a dare while “revelling with friends”, QAS Cairns senior operations supervisor Neil Noble told reporters.

“He’s very fortunate that he survived this incident and was able to be rescued... (he’s) due to undergo surgery for extensive injuries to his arm,” Noble said.

Local newspaper the Cairns Post said De Paauw escaped the croc’s grip on his left arm by punching it in the head with his right arm.

De Paauw’s friends’ efforts to get him out of the water quickly helped him survive, Noble added.

 

Crocodiles are common in Australia’s north where numbers have increased since the introduction of protection laws in 1971.

Crocodiles kill an average of two people each year in Australia.

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