Tuesday, February 06, 2007

G'day and G'bye, Mates

Australia, the tour of death awaits:

Australia has proven a deadly holiday destination for 2,433 tourists in the past seven years because of baking weather, dangerous terrain and an array of deadly animals, according to new government figures.

A British tourist was killed by a 13ft crocodile while swimming north of Darwin in 2005, while at least one visitor was stung to death by jellyfish.

Deaths have also occurred on hang-gliding, parachuting and fishing expeditions. Accounts of attacks by sharks, crocs and other deadly animals are almost weekly occurrences as are fatalities.

Ranger Craig Adams, of the Australian Reptile Park, said: "Going bush here is a far cry from the urban European lifestyle. A mud pool can hold a five-metre crocodile. And while koalas are cute, people don't realise one will give you a nasty bite or carve you up with its claws. A wombat can knock you over."

But, there's good news:

More than five million people visit Australia every year. The vast majority of them return home safely.

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