Stab Magazine | Surfer loses arm and other hand in WA shark attack

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Surfer loses arm and other hand in WA shark attack

A 23-year-old male surfer has been attacked by a shark while surfing Wylie Bay Beach in Esperance, WA. Paramedics received a call shortly after 11am saying that a young man had lost one arm just below the elbow, and the other hand, as well as sustaining lacerations to the leg. A St John spokesman said […]

news // Mar 8, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

A 23-year-old male surfer has been attacked by a shark while surfing Wylie Bay Beach in Esperance, WA. Paramedics received a call shortly after 11am saying that a young man had lost one arm just below the elbow, and the other hand, as well as sustaining lacerations to the leg. A St John spokesman said the surfer sustained “quite severe trauma consistent with a shark attack.” He was taken to hospital in Esperance prior to being moved to Perth by the Royal Flying Doctor Service for further treatment. The victim’s girlfriend is reportedly at his bedside.

Shark_Esperance_InsetThe species of shark is unknown at this point, but a Fisheries spokeswoman said the department had sought permission from the Federal Government to kill the shark. “The department is currently preparing to deploy equipment in an effort to catch the shark,” the department said in a statement.

There has been a reported increase in shark activity in the area in the last two weeks. A white shark was spotted 50m offshore on September 20 at around 5pm. Wylie Bay is a well-known surf spot, with beachies as well as a reefbreak eight clicks out, but it’s also known for its shark presence.

Following seven fatal attacks in WA between 2010 and 2013, the WA Government ordered a shark cull and implemented a baiting drum line strategy – a strategy that was just recently abandoned due to inconclusive evidence of effectiveness. The Environmental Protection Authority ruled against the use of the drum lines based on environmental grounds.

Beaches in the surrounding area have been closed and will likely remain closed for several days.

This is the setup at Wylie Bay.

This is the setup at Wylie Bay.

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