Witnesses to a near fatal crocodile attack which left a British woman in a coma after her twin sister bravely fought it off with her bare hands have recalled the terrifying encounter.
Melissa Laurie, 28, was dragged underwater by a crocodile and violently tossed over in a ‘death roll’ while swimming in a lagoon with sister, Georgia, near Puerto Escondido in Mexico.
As well as being ‘half-drowned’, she suffered a broken wrist along with deep bites to her stomach and legs.
She was rescued from the jaws of the giant reptile by her sister, who repeatedly punched it in the head before dragging the zookeeper away by her hair and helping her back onto their tour boat.
The identical twins, from Berkshire, had been on a backpacking adventure and were visiting the Manialtepec lagoon, where the water is illuminated by millions of tiny plankton emitting ultraviolet light.
But the dream trip turned into a nightmare on Sunday when Melissa was almost killed during the savage attack.
Eyewitnesses to the horror told the Daily Mail how they heard desperate screams of ‘crocodile, crocodile’.
Guide Gerardo Escamilla Perez, who was escorting another group around the lagoon, said: ‘We started to hear shouts and noise, and we saw that there were people screaming inside the mangroves.’
He described leaving his own group and wading towards the girls, adding: ‘It’s a dangerous area, even more so at this time of year because animals are nesting.
‘I heard them shouting “Crocodile, crocodile”.’
He said he could see ‘bite marks, the marks of teeth’ and that Melissa’s head ‘was covered in blood’.
Moises Salinas, a 16-year-old hired to help out on one of the boats, recalled one of the men in the group ‘shouting about a crocodile’.
He said: ‘I jumped into the boat and got to where the ladies were. I could hear one of the girls shouting “My sister, my sister”.’
The teenager said he found Melissa being ‘cradled’ by her sister, adding: ‘She was conscious, breathing heavily like she couldn’t get enough air.’
He told the newspaper the group was left terrified by the assault and feared the crocodile would return to strike again.
Melissa, who was placed into a medical coma with a suspected punctured lung, later developed sepsis in hospital.
But she has since been taken off life support and is breathing independently, the Mail reports.
It has emerged that the twins’ tour guide was unlicensed and has since vanished from the area.
The head of the local police force told the newspaper an investigation has been launched into the incident.
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