Man's genius esky hack after boat sinks in croc-infested waters: 'very lucky'

Two men have survived 48 hours in croc-infested waters in the Northern Territory after their boat sank.

The pair were heading from the Daly River Boat Ramp toward Anson Bay in the Daly River region on Thursday when their boat hit a submerged object causing it to sink.

Adding to their anguish, police said their emergency beacon was not working. They also were unable to retrieve their phones which sank with the boat.

They swam against the tide to a nearby island and made a help sign using the lid of an esky.

The Daly River in Northern Territory is pictured.
The Daly River near where the men's boat sank. Source: Getty Images (file pic)

Luckily, a boat passed by on Saturday and spotted them. They went without food and water for two nights.

Acting Sergeant Troy Harris from the Water Police Section said the men had taken every precaution and were actually due to arrive at their destination on Sunday so were not overdue or reported missing.

“When they got into trouble, their safety equipment was not readily accessible in the short time they had before sinking. They swam directly for the nearest land and made efforts to attract attention. Importantly, they stayed put,” he said.

Above view of Australian saltwater crocodile in the Tropical Far North of Queensland, Australia.
Two men have survived 48 hours without food and water near croc-infested waters in the NT. Source: Getty Images (file pic)

However, he highlighted how the incident shows why grab bags are important in scenarios such as the one the men faced which should contain additional safety gear.

'Lucky to survive'

“The men are very lucky to have survived this ordeal, given the remoteness of the area, the presence of saltwater crocodiles and the extreme heat at this time of year,” he said.

“We especially commend the skipper of the rescue vessel for saving these two men.”

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