Missing Adelaide man found after 14 days in NT outback

Tamra McBeath-Riley

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North Territory Police said Monday that they had deployed helicopters over Stuarts Well and Owen Springs in a bid to find Hockridge and Tran.

A 52-year-old woman who survived for almost two weeks in the scorching Australian outback said Monday she did it by burrowing into the sand beneath her stalled vehicle and drinking from a watering hole intended for cattle.

Tamra McBeath-Riley, 52, and her partner Claire Hockridge, 46, had set out on a drive from Alice Springs in Australia's Northern Territory with their friend Phu Tran, and McBeath-Riley's dog on November 19.

Speaking to reporters outside hospital on Monday, McBeath-Riley said she hadn't eaten in five days and is "worried to death" about Hockridge and Tran, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

"As a result of that information, we were able to locate the vehicle and then from there they have followed some of the other tracks and have located her", Supt Pauline Vicary told ABC News.

"We tried so many times to get out, but just couldn't get out, the river was too large", McBeath-Riley told BBC.

"During the day it's just really hot so we dug ourselves under the vehicle during the day into the sand".

Police said she was in good condition, and had managed to stay hydrated by boiling and drinking groundwater she had found.

"They had very limited food-they had a packet of biscuits and some beef noodles between them and that obviously didn't last them very long", she told the ABC.

The group eventually found a nearby watering hole and boiled water before sieving it through a shirt.

In this image made from video, an advertisement for the campsite line the roadside where a woman was found after being stranded in the Alice Springs area in the central Australian Outback.

"When the helicopter found me, I thought that Claire and Phu had reached the highway", she told reporters. They did not know anyone was looking for them. "So to find that's not the case is worrying". Her dog's status was not immediately clear. Her companions began trekking 20 kilometers (12 miles) toward a highway on Thursday, planning to avoid the desert heat, which came close to 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) in recent days, by walking at night and carrying up to 7 liters (15 pints) of water.

Vicary said authorities are following a single set of footprints through the Northern Territory outback, indicating that Hockridge and Tran had also split.

Police eventually found McBeath-Riley about a mile from the auto.

"She's had a fairly traumatic period of time", Vicary added.

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