Australian man found after two weeks stranded in outback
A second person has been found alive after becoming stranded two weeks ago in Australia’s remote outback.
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Phu Tran, 40, was discovered on Tuesday in the Northern Territory, police said.
Mr Tran was with two other people who became stranded when their car got stuck in a riverbed on 19 November. They later split up to find help.
One woman, Tamra McBeath-Riley, was found on Monday, but her partner, Claire Hockridge, remains missing.
Mr Tran has been taken to hospital for treatment after being found by a farmer in remote land south of Alice Springs, Northern Territory Police said.
They added he had survived by finding drinking groundwater.
The group and Ms McBeath-Riley’s dog, Ray, had been travelling in remote territory just south of Alice Springs when they found themselves stuck in the bed of the Hugh River.
On Monday, Ms McBeath-Riley said the group had stayed by the car for around three days in an attempt to free it.
"We tried many times to try to get out, but just couldn’t get out, the river was just too large," she told reporters outside hospital.
"During the day it’s just really hot so we dug ourselves under the car. At night [we] could sleep in the car."
They used up all their supplies of water, as well as some vodka drinks, biscuits and beef noodles they had in the car.
They eventually found a watering hole, and boiled the water before sieving it through a shirt.
"It was still quite dirty, not hygienic water but it kept them alive," Supt Pauline Vicary told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
They eventually decided to split up to get help. Mr Tran and Ms Hockridge planned to walk towards the highway.
Ms McBeath-Riley stayed in the area, thinking her dog would not survive a long walk.
Northern Territory Police despatched helicopters to search for the trio. They eventually spotted Ms McBeath-Riley about 1.5km (0.9 miles) away from the car area after a local person reported seeing tyre tracks.
"Because of the terrain that they have gone missing in, and because we don’t have a particularly focused area, we are still doing the helicopters," Supt Vicary told ABC on Monday.
"It’s quite a diverse terrain — there’s sandy dunes, there’s hard clay, there’s areas of dense trees but there is also rocks and ranges in the area as well."