French fisherman left with a 'few holes in the head' after surviving crocodile death roll attack
Yoann Galeran left with puncture wounds to the head and neck after being attacked by a saltwater crocodile
In a remarkable tale of survival a French sailor has been left with a "few holes on the head" after narrowly escaping the jaws of a saltwater crocodile by punching it repeatedly.
Yoann Galeran, 29, had swam out to retrieve a dinghy about 15m (50ft) from the shore in remote northeastern Arnhem Land, Australia, when he was attacked by the two-metre long creature.
According to reports the crocodile grabbed Mr Galeran by the head and began a death roll: "It went straight away to the top of my head and diving under the water he tried to do that spinning thing," he said, referring to the common drowning maneuver used by crocodiles.
"It was going so fast — everything happened in less than five seconds and then I fell free," he added. "I'm very lucky."
"If it was a bit bigger crocodile, I wouldn't be talking to you now," he said.
Mr Galeran said he started to instinctively punch the crocodile in a frantic bid to escape its jaws.
The deck hand, who had earlier been enjoying an evening at a local yacht club, said his head was inside the crocodile's mouth for less than a second.
Despite this the animal still managed to inflict puncture wounds on his head and neck.
Mr Galeran was subsequently taken to a hospital in the remote mining town of Nhulunbuy, where he received several stitches.
Fishing boat skipper, Craig van Lawick, said he thought Galeran was joking about being attacked by a crocodile until he saw the blood.
Zoologist Charlie Manolis said the crocodile probably weighed less than 40 kilograms (88 pounds) and was too small to be a serious threat to an adult.
It had probably misjudged Galeran's size in the moonless night.
"Had it been a four meter (13 foot) or bigger crocodile, there would have been a 100 percent chance that he'd be dead now," said Manolis, chief scientist at Darwin's Crocodylus Park crocodile farm.
"That size animal in daylight would probably not have gone near him. It can cause you significant damage if the animal really bites you a fair bit, but really they're not strong enough to overpower a full grown human," he added.
Since the incident government rangers have set a trap to catch the crocodile at the site of the attack.
Crocodiles can grow up to 6 meters (20 feet) long and have become abundant across Australia's tropical north since they became protected by federal law in 1971.
- 1 The BBC has just done more to eradicate ‘terrorism’ than all our wars since 9/11
- 2 Does the path to true love really lie in these 36 questions?
- 4 Presidential optical illusion offers clues to how brain processes faces
- 5 Roald Dahl letter warning student to 'eschew beastly adjectives' rediscovered after 35 years
King Salman: Just five days in, Saudi Arabia's new king has already overseen a beheading
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary: Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
Presidential optical illusion offers clues to how brain processes faces
Chilling drone footage captures Auschwitz ahead of 70th anniversary of liberation
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Louise Mensch says 'F**K YOU' in explosive tweets about David Cameron, Saudi Embassy and the Queen over King Abdullah tributes
£25000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This web-based lead generation ...
£125 - £150 per day + Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: A 'wonderful primary ...
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Our client is an 11-16 mixed commun...
£32000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A rapidly developing company in...