A family of four has been rescued after being stranded in the Simpson Desert for five days when their camper van became bogged by torrential rain.
South Australian police said the family were winched to safety by a rescue helicopter on Tuesday thanks to a coordinated effort by emergency services.
Police were alerted about the family’s predicament on Friday morning via an emergency beacon after their Mitsubishi Canter 4WD became bogged near Oodnadatta following bad weather and flooding on the roads.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) airdropped the family water and a satellite phone on Saturday, returning with more supplies the next day.
Police initially expressed concerns that rescuing the family would prove difficult given their remote location and flooding in the surrounding areas.
The owner of a hotel 80 kilometres from where the family became stuck told ABC News it could take at least one week, if not several, for the road to become accessible.
Perth-based Ori and Lindsey Zavros and their two children were travelling through the Simpson Desert on their way home for Christmas when they found themselves stuck in the far north of the state.
The family have been travelling around the country in a customised campervan since November last year, visiting Western Australia, South Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland.
Ori and Lindsey posted a photo of the family in front of a helicopter to social media accounts they had been using to document their trip yesterday thanking those involved in the rescue efforts.
“Right now our priority is making sure Zoe and Zane are comfortable and finding a way home asap,” the post said.
Police said the family would be flown to Coober Pedy to stay the night before making their own further travel arrangements.
Featured image source: Facebook/truckingoz87