Lost Couple in Israeli Desert Found Next to Rock-written SOS

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The SOS spelled with desert rocks that helped police find the missing couple, May 22, 2018.
The SOS spelled with desert rocks that helped police find the missing couple, May 22, 2018.Credit: Police spokesperson

A man and woman who were lost in southern Israel for two days were rescued on Tuesday in the Negev desert. This morning, a police helicopter spotted the couple waving next to an "SOS" sign they had spelled out in desert rocks in Nahal Nekarot. 

According to police, the Negev Mountain Rescue Unit received a call from their family regarding their absence on Monday morning. The couple, ages 30 and 34 from Tel Aviv, said they were hiking when they lost their way. Since they had planned a short excursion, the couple didn't have much water or food.

Police say after the couple was rescued they received medical attention and were released home. 

The man's sister told Haaretz that the couple left for the trip on Sunday and were meant to stay in Mitzpe Ramon. According to her, when the couple didn't come home and weren't registered as checked into the hotel, the family knew there was a problem and called the police. 

Nahal Karot in the Negev desert, 2016Credit: Yoav Kaveh

"We knew they were missing when their friend, who was watching their dog, brought the dog home only to find that there was no one there," she said. "We figured something was wrong, so we called the hotel, who said they had never arrived. When we contacted their friends and found out they hadn't heard from them since Sunday at 8 A.M., we realized the situation was very, very grim."

She said her brother hunted lizards for food, adding that the woman refused to eat them.

A Magen David Adom spokesperson said the couple suffered from mild dehydration. "They told us that they were in the field since Monday morning without any water. Fortunately, they did the right thing and stayed in as shady a place as possible. We gave them first medical attention in the field and evacuated them to the hospital for further medical attention," the spokesperson said. 

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