Australia Surfer ‘Killed By Shark’
SYDNEY – A surfer was apparently bitten to death by a shark off Australia’s west coast Saturday, police said, the fifth such fatal attack in the region in less than a year.
The man was surfing near Wedge Island, north of Perth, on Saturday morning with a friend who told officers he was savaged by the shark and suffered extensive injuries, police said.
“It’s reported to be a fatal attack,” a police spokesman told AFP. “The report to police was made by the surfing mate of the victim who was present at the time of the attack.”
It would be the fifth fatal shark incident off Western Australia since September — an unprecedented number that sparked calls earlier this year for a cull.
A sea kayaker narrowly escaped the jaws of a great white shark last month, with a friend managing to pluck him from the water after he was rammed by one of the marine predators off Perth’s Mullaloo Beach.
That attack came just hours after another great white, thought to be five metres (16 feet) long, lunged from the water at a crab fisherman at a dive park south of Perth.
Sharks are common in Australian waters but deadly attacks are rare, with only one of the average 15 incidents a year typically proving fatal.
Experts say the average number of attacks in the country has increased in line with population growth and the popularity of water sports. – AFP