Shark Attack In Australia Delays International Surfing Competition
A surfing competition in Australia was temporarily postponed after a shark attacked one of the surfers on Monday morning. According to one witness, photographer Peter Jovic, the man was separated from his board during the attack but managed to body surf back to shore.
The man, who was bitten on the leg, and taken to Royal Perth Hospital where he is in stable condition, CNN reported. St. John Ambulance tweeted that he was conscious and breathing on the way to the hospital.
Upon hearing news of the attack, the World Surf League's Margaret River Pro 2018 was suspended until local authorities were able to ensure the safety of everyone at the competition.
“We have been alerted of a shark incident that occurred near Gracetown,” the WSL wrote in a tweet. “The safety of our surfers and staff is a top priority.”
The WSL has safety procedures in place to protect competitors and spectators. After being given the all clear to resume the competition, the WSL strengthened their safety measures even further in order to ensure there were no other incidents. According to a tweet by the WSL, the competition resumed around 10:40 a.m., local time, after about an hour delay. The competition added some extra safety measures, including “ski and drone presence.”
Hawaiian pro surfer John Florence also had a close call with a shark before the competition. After returning to shore, Florence sent up a drone to get a better look at what was in the water. Footage revealed two large sharks, Australia's ABC News reported.
Instagram user Sam Roberts captured a photo of the scene, noting that another shark attack had occurred in the area 14 years ago. Unfortunately, that shark attack was fatal.