Politics

Rescue underway for young West Australian family stranded in South Australia’s Simpson Desert


A young family stranded in South Australia’s Simpson Desert is set to be rescued from the remote site where they have been stuck for four nights.

Orios and Lindsey Zavros and their children became trapped in the outback late last week after their campervan became bogged following heavy rain.

Watch an interview with Orios’ parents in the video above.

ABC News has reported a SA Police helicopter, with a paramedic on board, has taken off to rescue the family of four.

Once rescued, the family will reportedly be brought back to the Olympic Dam airport.

The helicopter left Port Augusta at about 10am ACDT and is expected to reach the scene some time around midday.

Emergency services were previously unable to reach the Zavros family who were told they could be stuck for weeks due to a major storm sweeping across South Australia.

The family were initially told it could be as long as two weeks before someone is able to free them, depending on weather conditions.

The young family stranded in South Australia’s Simpson Desert is set to be rescued.
The young family stranded in South Australia’s Simpson Desert is set to be rescued. Credit: 7NEWS
The van became stuck in the mud during a torrential downpour.
The van became stuck in the mud during a torrential downpour. Credit: 7NEWS

Family remained in ‘good spirits’

The family of four have remained in good spirits, with food and water, as well as a satellite phone to contact family.

Orios’ parents told Sunrise they spoke with the family on Monday night, who seemed to be doing ‘a lot better.’

“They were fine, but anxious due to the weather conditions,” Lagis Zavros said.

“They were very well prepared though, they knew they would have a three or four-day crossing of the Simpson Desert. They just didn’t anticipate some of the bad weather that came through after they left Birdsville.”

The Zavros family with their campervan.
The Zavros family with their campervan. Credit: 7NEWS

Orios’ mother Theo told 7NEWS late last week it was “hectic and horrible” not knowing what was happening when the distress signal sounded.

For five hours, they were kept in the dark as to the family’s condition until a satellite phone was air-dropped.

“Their aim is to cover every aspect of Australia,” Theo said, adding they documented their adventures online.

The Zavros family’s aim is to ‘cover all aspects of Australia’, Orios’ mother Theo said.
The Zavros family’s aim is to ‘cover all aspects of Australia’, Orios’ mother Theo said. Credit: 7NEWS

An AMSA spokesperson said last week contact with the heavily bogged campervan was made within hours of the emergency call and confirmed none of the family members had been injured.

“Coordination of the rescue has been transferred to SA Police who are preparing a ground response,” the spokesperson said.

“However due to severe wet weather, roads in the area are flooded and inaccessible for several days.”



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