Two men from Britain travelling in Australia had a daunting encounter with a shark earlier this morning. The tourists were enjoying a snorkeling trip by Airlie Beach in Queensland when they were attacked, one of whom lost his foot.
Tourism Whitsunday, a tourism group for the area, said that a tour boat carried a group of snorkeling enthusiasts to Hook Passage not far from Whitsunday Islands. The younger of the two men involved in the attack (22 years old) was the first to have a brush with the shark. He received several cuts on the bottom section of his legs. The shark then directed its attention to the other tourist (28 years old) and proceeded to bite off the man’s foot.
The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland orchestrated the helicopter rescue of the tourists. According to the club, the men were “wrestling and thrashing about in the water in Hook Passage when the attack occurred”.
Fortunately, two others aboard the tour boat happened to be paramedics. The shark attack victims were able to receive immediate first aid treatment. A helicopter transported the two tourists to Mackay Hospital.
Tour group operator ZigZag Whitsundays made a statement regarding the attack, saying, “Our thoughts are with them, their families, and the other guests on the tour”.
According to the statement, the tour group halted the rest of the tours that were scheduled for that day. The group said that they “will work closely with authorities regarding our upcoming tours.”
Other attacks at Whitsunday Islands
There have been numerous other shark attack incidents at the Whitsunday Islands. November last year, one man died after an encounter with a shark when he climbed off his paddle board and entered the water. A couple months prior to that, there were two other separate occurrences where both individuals involved were attacked by sharks and received wounds on their legs, all within a 24 hour period.
Six sharks were trapped and slaughtered after these three attacks last year. It’s another case of humans believing that they have dominion over the planet and the right do whatever they want. Sharks have been around long before humans existed. A predator hardwired to hunt what it assesses to be prey can’t be blamed for attacking careless entitled humans intruding on the animals’ territory.