Capsize survivor, 72, threw tools at deadly crocodiles to keep them at bay


A 72-year-old man threw spanners and spark plugs to keep crocodiles at bay after one of them capsized his boat in a northern Australian creek, drowning his friend.

A crocodile tipped over their 10ft boat at Leaders Creek, south-west of Darwin, when the two tourists were attempting to retrieve crab pots on Tuesday, said Ian Badham, director of helicopter medical retrieval service CareFlight.

A crocodile with its eyes just above the water
(Rob Griffith/AP/PA)

The drowned man, in his 50s, became trapped under the boat while the survivor scrambled upon the upturned hull.

He threw spanners and spark plugs at approaching crocodiles as he dragged the boat toward mangroves where he sheltered for three hours, Badham said.

Crocodile seen in Australia
(Wilson Ring/AP/PA)

Three professional crabbers heard his shouts, rescued him and retrieved his friend's body.

He was treated for shock before he was flown to a Darwin hospital and later discharged.