A surfer died off the coast of Australia following a vicious shark attack Sunday morning. The man, who police said appeared to be in his 20s, was at the beach for Father’s Day. Australians celebrate the holiday on September 5.
Authorities have not released the man’s name. But they told CNN that he was swimming off the coasts of Shelly and Emerald beaches in Coffs Harbour, some 300 miles from Sydney.
People in the area saw the attack and tried to rescue him. Paramedics and paramedics also rushed to his aid. But he died before he could get to a hospital.
“A number of local surfers and bystanders came to the aid of this man,” New South Wales ambulance official Chris Wilson told CNN. “Despite the best efforts of bystanders, paramedics, and other emergency services, the patient couldn’t be revived.”
Australia has the second-highest number of unprovoked shark attacks in the world. Only America has more. But this is a rare occurrence in that part of Oz. Aaron Armstrong, who lives there, said he wasn’t aware of any other attacks off the coast of Emerald Beach.
“It will change the fabric a little bit for a little while in EB, that’s for sure,” Armstrong told Australian Broadcasting Corp.
Sharks Attacks Two in Southern U.S. This Summer
Sharks sent two people to the hospital this summer in the South. The most recent happened last month in Hilton Head when a suspected blacktip shark bit a lifeguard. That shark is common in the area and can swim in shallow waters.
The shark bit the lifeguard’s chest while he checked water conditions near the Palmetto Dunes area on Aug. 4, the AP reported. Paramedics rushed him to a hospital in Savannah, Ga., with a deep cut. But authorities expected him to make a full recovery.
That was the second shark attack in that area this summer. In July, a shark chomped down a surf instructor off the coast of Tybee Island, Ga. That’s about 15 miles south of Hilton Head.
Atsushi Yamada, the owner of Hot Sushi’s Happy Surf Camp, was teaching a class on July 27. He had paddled out on his board to help a student that drifted away from the group when the shark grabbed onto his leg.
“It felt like I got hit by a baseball bat,” Yamada told WJCL.
He said he had several cuts to his arms and a chunk missing from his leg. However, doctors told him he won’t need any major reconstructive surgery and should recover completely. He said he blames himself for the attack and doesn’t hold any ill will toward the shark, which experts said was likely a bull shark or a blacktip.