Story at a glance

  • Two British women are hospitalized after being attacked by a crocodile while on vacation in Mexico.
  • Melissa and Georgia Laurie were on a night swimming tour in Mexico’s Manialtepec Lagoon when Melissa was attacked by a crocodile. Georgia was then attacked by the animal while trying to get her sister to safety.
  • Georgia suffered injuries to her hands, and Melissa was placed in a medically induced coma.

A British woman has spoken out after punching a crocodile that attacked her twin sister while they vacationed in Mexico.

Twin sisters Melissa and Georgia Laurie, 28, were with a tour group swimming in Mexico’s Manialtepec Lagoon when Melissa was attacked.

The Manialtepec Lagoon is known for its diverse ecosystem and bioluminescent water, with many visitors taking night tours to witness the glowing waters. However, visitors are to be warned that crocodiles reaching lengths of 10 feet can live in the lagoon.


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"I actually said to the guide, 'This looks like a place where crocodiles make their home,'" Georgia told the BBC.

Georgia heard her sister cry out as a crocodile attacked her and dove underwater to find Melissa, locating her floating face-down. She grabbed her sister and began to swim back toward the tour boat when the crocodile returned and attacked both sisters. 

"It was fight or flight," Georgia said, "and you have to fight for the people you love."

Georgia was able to punch the crocodile, stunning it as she continued to drag Melissa back to the boat. 

According to the BBC, a German national, who was not certified or registered to lead a tour with the tourism authority, had brought the unaware twins and other members of the supposed tour to an area of the lagoon crocodiles tend to use as a nesting ground.

"They're not guides," said Lalo Escamilla, a local boatman and ornithologist who got into the water to help the sisters. "They're not federally-approved experts, they don't know this place. That's the problem."


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The German national has since reportedly fled the area and hasn’t been located.

Both sisters were rushed to a Mexican hospital. Georgia suffered injuries to her hands, but Melissa had water in her lungs, a broken wrist, numerous lacerations and became septic from a ruptured intestine, forcing doctors to place her in a medically induced coma. 

Though she still has a long recovery ahead, Melissa has since woken from her coma and is breathing on her own.

"We are all so happy," Georgia said.


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Published on Jun 11, 2021