On Sunday, in Oak Island, North Carolina, two swimmers were attacked by sharks in two separate incidents, leading to both victims losing their respective left arms. The shark that attacked the swimmers is thought to be either a Tiger Shark or a Bull Shark. According to USNews.com, it was a 12-year-old girl that lost her left arm below the elbow, and a 16-year-old boy that lost his left arm above the elbow after swimming approximately 60 ft offshore in just waist-deep water.
The attacks occurred just 30 miles (48 kilometers) up the coast from where a 13-year-old girl was bitten three days earlier. Unlike the more recent incidents, the teen’s injuries were superficial, with only small cuts on her foot. Despite the recent attacks, NC beaches have not been closed to the public, however, authorities have been warning beach goers of the risk.
So far in 2015, there have been 29 unprovoked shark attacks around the world and 14 in the U.S., according to the Global Shark Attack File. Last year, the world recorded 72 unprovoked shark attacks, down from 75 in 2013. Although sharks are still a credible threat to swimmers and surfers alike, proper reporting of shark sightings can help minimize the risk of shark attacks on surfers. Beach goers are advised to remain out of the water certain times of the year in specific locations where recurring shark attacks take place.
Want more information on sharks? Check out these 4 Tips to Help Prevent Shark Attacks.