Lost Brit divers fight off man-eating Komodo dragon to survive

June 8th, 2008 - 4:28 pm ICT by ANI  

London, June 8 (ANI): Three British divers swept away by powerful currents in the shark-infested Indian Ocean have revealed how they fought off an attack by a man-eating Komodo dragon, the worlds largest lizard.

The group drifted 20 miles to the deserted Rinca Island in Indonesia by clinging to a log.

They survived on raw shellfish for nearly two days and had to fend off the fearsome 21-stone lizard by throwing rocks at it.

The group - which included Charlotte Allin, 24, from Devon, her Thai-based boyfriend Jim Manning, 30, Carlisle-born dive teacher Kathleen Mitchinson, a French man and a Swedish woman - originally set off on an hour-long drift dive off Tawa Besar island, 250 miles east of Bali, on June 5 afternoon but got caught up in treacherous currents.

They were discovered by Indonesian fishermen on June 7 after fearing for their lives for nearly two days.

A rescue boat spotted the groups inflated orange and red safety sausages laid out as Xs on the rocks of Rinca Island.

The group is understood to be suffering from chronic dehydration, sunburn and exhaustion.

We had nothing to eat. We ate some kind of mussels scraped from the rocks. And on the beach a Komodo dragon came among us, the Daily Star quoted French diver Laurent Pinel, as saying.

Kathleen said it was a miracle they survived.

I didnt give up hope. Im so happy to be home and that we are all safe and sound, she said.

Ernest said: This was an absolute freak accident. There was nobody at fault. They did all the right things. They stayed afloat in the surf and kept together as a group.

Charlottes sister Sarah-Jane said: It was absolutely amazing to hear that she had been found well.

Charlotte said they had drifted for ages before finding a log to cling on to.

They were out there for a long time and it was a terrifying ordeal. We think it is a miracle they have survived, she added. (ANI)

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