JOHANNESBURG — An acclaimed outdoorsman who wrote about testing himself against nature is presumed dead after a crocodile snatched him from his kayak while he led an American expedition from the source of the White Nile into the heart of Congo.
Two Americans being guided by 35-year-old South African Hendrik Coetzee on the grueling trip could only watch in horror. They paddled unharmed to safety after the Tuesday morning attack on the Lukuga River in Congo.
The International Rescue Committee, which runs development projects in the Central African nation, helped evacuate the Americans to a nearby town.
Coetzee's body has not been recovered. The stretch of river where the trio was traveling is notoriously dangerous because of its whitewater, and numerous crocodiles and hippos.
Rains bring misery to eastern Australia
SYDNEY — Australia's attorney general declared 45 communities along the country's east coast disaster areas Friday, following weeks of drenching rains that have submerged homes, destroyed crops and killed four people.
Despite years of drought, December's heavy rains have brought misery to the region. Thousands of people have been forced to evacuate their homes, and officials have been scrambling to pluck stranded motorists from cars and surround homes and businesses with sandbags.
The relentless weather claimed its fourth victim Thursday. A man in his 50s was found in a car that had been swept into a creek in central Queensland state, police said.