Shark tears off tourist’s leg in horrific fatal beach attack at holiday hotspot

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A tourist was killed in a horrifying shark attack on a Caribbean island after the beast tore off her leg.

The 38-year-old woman, who has not been identified, had swum 500 metres from shore in the French territory of St Martin on Thursday last week, December 10.

An autopsy this week confirmed the victim, who was on a sabbatical on the island, suffered multiple bites in the attack.

Authorities have enforced a ban on swimming and water sports until tomorrow, December 16.

The secretary-general of the prefecture, Mikael Dore, said: "It was probably a tiger shark of significant size, three to four metres in length."

He added: "Swimming should be avoided after heavy rains or when the water is cloudy.

“The shark's vision is blurred and it can confuse a prey."

Nicolas Maslach, director of the Saint-Martin Nature Reserve, said: "The time of the attack is very important, but we know that the water was and still is very turbid."

Authorities are waiting for confirmation of a confirmed daily presence of sharks in local waters before deciding what further action to take, according to French news source 20 Minutes.

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A scientific monitoring group has also been set up.

Experts from Tahiti, Reunion Island, the United States, and the Antilles shark network will be called upon to make the best decisions to protect the population.

Shark attacks are extremely rare in the Caribbean region, with only 34 unprovoked shark bites since 2000 – four of which were fatal.

Only one prior unprovoked non-fatal attack in St Martin occurred in 2005.

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Last week, a 56-year-old surfer died after a shark attack in Honolua Bay in Hawaii.

He was taken to hospital for surgery and was reportedly in a stable condition afterwards.

But his health swiftly deteriorated and he died on Wednesday evening, December 9,KITVreported.

Hawaiian officials shared a picture of his surfboard, left with a massive 17in bite mark.

  • Sharks

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