Britons rescued from flooded campervan after parking in crocodile warning area
Three British backpackers have been rescued from rising floodwaters in Australia after waking up to find they had parked their campervan in a crocodile warning area.
The group were found on the roof of the vehicle when emergency services arrived at the scene off a highway south of Cairns, Queensland, on Tuesday morning.
The state's waterways are home to saltwater crocodiles, the largest species of the fearsome reptiles that are known to occasionally prey on humans.
A spokesman for Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) said the group had parked up at a camping ground on Monday evening.
"We received a call at about 6am this morning (7pm GMT Monday) to reports of three backpackers stranded due to flood water just off the Bruce Highway at Gordonvale," he said.
"The backpackers said the area was a crocodile notice area and they were concerned."
QFES water rescue teams, along with paramedics and police, raced to the scene and arrived to find the water had risen considerably since the alarm was raised.
"When we were called the water was just above the wheels," the spokesman said.
"There are signs in the area warning people of the crocodiles and as they were on the phone the water continued to rise.
"It got up to around three quarters of the vehicle and they got onto the roof."
An inflatable raft was deployed to bring the hapless backpackers back to dry land where they were assessed by paramedics.
None of the group is thought to have suffered any injuries.
Between the alarm being raised and the group all being rescued took around 45 minutes, the spokesman said.