Published: Tue, December 03, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Australian woman survives being stranded for almost 2 weeks in outback

Australian woman survives being stranded for almost 2 weeks in outback

A woman who was stranded in the arid central Australian Outback nearly two weeks ago has been rescued, and a search was continuing Monday for her two friends.

Northern Territory Police said Phu Tran was found by a livestock farmer south of Alice Springs.

McBeath-Riley had set out for a drive on November 19 with Claire Hockridge and Phu Tran, but their trip went awry when their vehicle became stuck in a riverbed, she told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

She said Mr Tran and Ms Hockridge left the vehicle on 27 November, carrying a Global Positioning System and a compass, hoping to find help.

For three days, Tamra McBeath-Riley, 52, Claire Hockridge, 46, and Phu Tran, 40, tried to dig it out, surviving off what little they had with them in hopes they would soon be back on the road, the BBC reported.

McBeath-Riley said she made a decision to stay at the waterhole with her Staffordshire terrier because she did not think the dog would survive a walk to the Stuart Highway, which connects Australia's north and south coasts. They have yet to find her companions.

Tamra McBeath-Riley was rescued Sunday after spending 12 days in the area of Alice Springs in Australia's Northern Territory, but two companions are still missing. During that time period, the trio survived on six liters of water, 10 cans of iced vodka, a packet of biscuits and some beef noodles.

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The trio left a note on their vehicle letting potential rescuers know which way they'd headed, and eventually came upon a cattle water hold from which they could drink. Now that she knows they're still missing, "I'm anxious to death", she said.

She said she was hopeful Hockridge and Tran would be found, but joked, "I'm sure [Tran] won't want to go four-wheel driving with us ever again". Ms McBeath-Riley found water about 1.5km north of the auto. "That was my immediate thought".

Mr Tran has been taken to Alice Springs Hospital for treatment.

Vicary said searchers had found one set of footprints.

"It's quite a diverse terrain", she told reporters.

Police eventually found McBeath-Riley about a mile from the vehicle.

"As a result of that information, we were able to locate the vehicle and then from there they have followed some of the other tracks and have located her", Vicary said.

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