VIA – HUFF POST
The Huffington Post | By Sara Gates Posted: 05/08/2013 4:03 pm EDT | Updated: 05/10/2013 10:21 am EDT
A newlywed French man was killed in a shark attack during his honeymoon in an incident near France’s Reunion Island Wednesday.
According to the Agence France-Presse, the unidentified 36-year-old was surfing off a popular beach on the island, east of Madagascar, when a shark charged at him twice. After spotting blood in the water, another swimmer notified lifeguards, but by the time the surfer was dragged back to the beach, he could not be revived.
As France’s Newsring notes, the couple from Morteau, in eastern France, traveled to the island for their honeymoon with their 18-month-old son.
Witnesses at a press conference held shortly after the incident noted that his wife was on the beach when the attack occurred. She is currently being treated for shock.
Local radio station Antenne Réunion reports that the man was already in cardiac arrest when emergency services arrived, according to French-language publication RTL. He reportedly lost a lot of blood in the attack, with bites on his wrist and thigh.
Reunion’s Shark Prevention Association released a statement on its website and Facebook page hours before the incident, announcing that it would cancel its regular surveillance of the surf due to “lack of underwater visibility.” As RTL notes, activities on the beach, located on the southern part of the island, have been closely monitored since last April, when another surfer reported that he was charged by a shark.
During the press conference, the island’s state representative, Jean-Luc Marx, stated that this is the “first fatal attack since July 2012 on the coast of Reunion,” Newsring reports. Previously, three people were killed by sharks off the island in 2011 and 2012.
In a 2011 shark attack, 30-year-old Ian Redmond was on his honeymoon in Seychelles, an island off eastern Africa north of Madagascar, when he was killed while snorkeling.
While there are more than 400 species, World Wildlife Fund notes, the great white shark, the tiger shark and the bull shark are the only types of shark that tend to attack humans. According to the most recent statistics from Oceana, there were 4.2 fatal shark attacks worldwide, on average, between 2006 and 2010.
See photos of the scene in the gallery below. (Warning: Some photos may not be suitable for certain audiences.)
VIA – WEATHER.COM:
A young man sits on the beach after a 36 year-old French surfer was attacked and killed by a shark on May 8, 2013 on the beach of Saint-Gilles, on the western coast of the Reunion island. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
People sit on the beach where others have placed flowers in the sand on the beach of Brisants in Saint-Gilles-les Bains on May 9, 2013 to pay tribute to a surfer killed after he was attacked by a shark on May 8. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
French gendarmes carry the corpse of a 36 year-old French surfer attacked and killed by a shark on May 8, 2013 on the beach of Saint-Gilles, on the western coast of the Reunion island. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
A boy holds a flower as he stands in the water on the beach of Brisants in Saint-Gilles-les Bains on May 9, 2013 to pay tribute to a surfer killed after he was attacked by a shark on May 8. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
A man throws flowers into the water off the beach of Brisants in Saint-Gilles-les Bains on May 9, 2013 to pay tribute to a surfer killed after he was attacked by a shark on May 8. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
A young girl holds flowers on the beach of Brisants in Saint-Gilles-les Bains on May 9, 2013 to pay tribute to a surfer killed after he was attacked by a shark on May 8. (RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)
Honeymooning Surfer Killed in France Shark Attack
Published: May 9, 2013, 11:31 AM EDT weather.com
A French surfer on his honeymoon was killed May 8 by a shark just off the shore of Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean, while his new wife was on the beach.
The 36-year-old (whose name was not released) had been in the water at Brisants de Saint-Gilles, a popular beach and spot for surfing on the western shore of the French-owned island when the attack occurred, according to a report by Agence France-Presse.
After a shark charged at the victim twice, biting him on the arm and thigh, onlookers spotted a large amount of blood in the water and immediately alerted police. Lifeguards brought him onto the beach and tried to revive him, but they were unable to do so after he experienced both cardiac and respiratory arrest.
“The water was murky,” a witness said, according to local officials at a press conference after the attack. “There were only a few children quite to the water’s edge. We washed the bodyboarder off. He was alone. And then we saw a big puddle of blood.”
Reunion Island Prefect Jean-Luc Marx said in a statement that “conditions were unfavorable: waste water [and] waves on the west coast,” according to the French website Newsring.
A few hours before the attack occurred, the locally-based Shark Prevention Association had canceled a scheduled monitoring of surfing that afternoon “because of the lack of visibility underwater,” according to Newsring. The victim had not heard about the cancellation.
The surfer’s wife, who was on the beach when the attack occurred, was being treated for shock, AFP reported.
The fatal attack was the first this year on Reunion Island, where three people have been killed by sharks in the past two years. Last summer, another swimmer was attacked by a shark that tore off his arm and leg, though he survived.
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