Google Maps watchers spot SHIPWRECK on mysterious island hiding deadly tribe

GOOGLE Maps users are marvelling at a shipwreck with a dramatic past that is visible online.

Satellite images available on the digital map tool show a vessel run aground on North Sentinel Island in the Indian Ocean.

The remote spot is home to the Sentinelese, an uncontacted tribe of between 100 and 150 people who are hostile to visitors.

The ship hit a coral reef near the island in 1981 and came under attack from the indigenous people.

Reddit user "Klutzy_Professor5039" posted a screengrab of the wreck of the Primrose last month.

"Shipwrecked on North Sentinel Island," they wrote, adding that the Sentinelese are "the most hostile tribe in the world".

In response, fellow forum-dwellers underlined the bad luck of the 106 crew and passengers on board.

One wrote: "Oof. Can't think of a worse place to get shipwrecked".

Other comments referenced the islander's previous visitors.

In 2019, a US missionary was killed by Sentinelese tribespeople after several uninvited trips to the island as part of a mission to convert the clan to Christianity.

One commenter cruelly wrote: "That dude who took them Jesus a while back and died before he made it to the trees. On the upside, he missed out on Covid."

The Primrose was a 16,000-ton freighter that ran aground in a storm while transporting a cargo of chicken feed from Bangladesh to Australia on August 2, 1981.

The 31 crew members had endured a night of terror as the ship was tossed around the Bay of Bengal for hours before becoming lodged on a coral reef just before midnight.

Two days later, a Hong Kong shipping company received a desperate cable from the ship’s captain Liu Chunglong.

He requested an urgent airdrop of weapons to fight off “wild island people carrying spears and arrows” who were threatening to board the ship.

At first, there had been no reason to panic, stranded as they were near a stunning and seemingly deserted island paradise.

On or around August 3, a young crew member on lookout duty noticed human activity on the island.

People were emerging from the forest and making their way towards the beach.

They looked unlike anybody he had seen before — small and naked with narrow belts around their waists — and they were waving spears, bows and arrows in the direction of the stricken vessel.

Word of the drama emerged on August 4, when Captain Liu sent a panicked cable to the Regent Shipping Company, which had supplied the crew, requesting an immediate airdrop of firearms.

“Wildmen, estimate more than 50, carrying various homemade weapons are making two or three wooden boats,” the message read. “Worrying they will board us at sunset. All crew members’ lives not guaranteed.”

According to The American Scholar, the same treacherous conditions that beached The Primrose on the reef “kept the tribesmen’s canoes at bay and high winds blew their arrows off the mark”.

“The crew kept up a 24-hour guard with makeshift weapons (including) a flare gun, axes (and) some lengths of pipe, as news of the emergency slowly filtered to the outside world.”

As high sea and gale force winds forced Indian rescue crews to repeatedly put off their mission, the bizarre stand-off between the mostly Hong Kong-Chinese crew and the spear-throwing Stone Age tribe made world headlines.

“Those natives are not used to outsiders, they are not used to civilised people,” search coordinator Colonel Pritvi Nath told UPI.

After several failed rescue attempts, The Primrose crew were eventually winched to safety by helicopter under the watchful eyes of the Sentinelese.

Footage of the tribespeople taken during “friendly” contact with a group of visiting Indian anthropologists in 1991 shows some members carrying metal tools for the first time.

It is believed the tools were forged from metal scavenged from The Primrose, which remains in its resting place atop a coral reef near the island.

In other news, an internet sleuth has spotted two shipwrecks and what they say is a "distress signal" on Google Earth.

Astronomers claim to have spotted the first known planet outside of the Milky Way.

Star Trek’s William Shatner, 90, became the oldest astronaut in history after a trip on Blue Origin rocket last month.

And, NASA is gearing up to launch a spacecraft that will crash into an asteroid as part of a trial of a new planetary defence system.

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