Archive for the ‘Indian Ocean’ category

INJURED – 5 August 2012 – St Leu, Reunion, Indian Ocean – surfer injured

7 August, 2012

St Leu surf point break on Reunion. A surfer had his hand and foot severed by a shark while surfing here on 5 August 2012.

A 40-year-old surfer referred to only as Fabien by linfo was attacked by a shark while surfing at St Leu point break on the west coast of Reunion island in the Indian Ocean. According to the report the shark severed (sectionnés) his foot and hand. Whether they were completely severed is not clear. The incident happened around 5.15pm local time on Saturday 5 August 2012. It is the first recorded shark attack at St Leu.

He managed to get away from the shark and other surfers nearby helped him to the shore. He was helped by a doctor who was on the beach at the time and then taken to Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Saint-Pierre where he had emergency surgery to treat his wounds.

No other details were reported.

This is the second attack in Reunion waters in 2 weeks (the attack on 23 July 2012 at Trois Bassins was fatal) and has sparked a debate on the island about hunting sharks. St Leu is in a marine reserve.

The Australian

PIC Source:

FATAL – 23 July 2012 – Trois-Bassins, Reunion island – surfer attacked

25 July, 2012

Trois-Bassins surf spot on Reunion – the scene of a fatal shark attack on a surfer on Monday 23 July 2012.

Reports with few details say Alexandre Rassica, 22, a resident of La Reunion, died from his wounds after a shark bit through his leg while he was surfing at popular surf spot Trois-Bassins, on Reunion island.

According to media other surfers managed to bring him to shore but were unable to resuscitate him after he suffered a cardiac arrest.

He was surfing 100 metres offshore when the attack took place on Monday morning 23 July 2012.

No other details were reported.

Transworld Surf

PIC source:
Magic Seaweed

UPDATE to FATAL shark attack on surfer at KOEEL BAY, outside Cape Town, South Africa – 19 April 2012

20 April, 2012

The shark responsible for the attack – shot by Sven Thoresen shortly after the attack and uploaded to Twitter. @sven110975

It was like someone pushed a button to turn the sea from a clear blue to dark red, that’s how quickly he was losing blood from the wound.

David Lilienfeld, 20, was killed by a shark while bodyboarding at Koeel Bay (Kogel Baai), near Cape Town, South Africa. The shark is presumed to be a great white 4-5 metres long. There were two sharks in the area when the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) boat arrived on the scene.

The attack took place at a surf spot called Caves at Koeel Bay in the afternoon of Thursday 19 April 2012.

Lilienfeld was a Springbok bodyboarder and placed 5th in the South African bodyboarding championships in 2011.


David Lilienfeld surfing at Camps Bay, Cape Town

A witness to the attack said the shark repeatedly attacked Lilienfeld. His leg was severed in the ordeal as he tried to fight off the shark with his bodyboard.

Lilienfled was pulled from the water by his brother. He was confirmed dead on the scene by rescue personnel.

A witness who was had just come in from a surf and was on the beach at the time of the attack told the press the surf was “really fun”. He had gone in and was sitting on the beach when “I saw a huge dorsal fin of a shark surface near to the two bodyboarders, and close in on them.”

He said Lilienfeld tried to fight off the shark by pushing his bodyboard between himself and the great white, but “the shark kept coming back, a second and I think a third time, before it got his leg. It was like someone pushed a button to turn the sea from a clear blue to dark red, that’s how quickly he was losing blood from the wound.”

“I think it took about 8 minutes to get the young bodyboarder to shore, but you could already tell by that time that he’d lost a lot of blood.”

The witness told ZigZag that he had been surfing at Koeel Bay for the past 19 years “but something doesn’t feel right there anymore”.

“I’ve got a feeling I am going to regret coming down to the beach for this surf for a long time. The visual memory of the bodyboarder being attacked is going to be stuck in the back of my mind and although I’ve often surfed Caves alone, I don’t think I will be doing that anymore – at least for a long time to come.”

“It was a horror show. It looked like something from the Jaws movie.”

Chumming debate
A serious debate that has been ongoing for some time about chumming — throwing blood and guts into — the water in the vicinity where the attack took place  to attract sharks for shark cage diving and documentary filming has come to the fore in South Africa following this tragic incident. For more on the debate read this article in ZigZag.

The City of Cape Town released a report of the attack – in an effort to clarify exacty what happened and also weigh in on the chumming debate.
Report and Review of Events at Kogel Bay “Caves” After Great White Shark Attack





PIC Source:

Shark pic via ZigZag|
Shot by Sven Thoresen and uploaded to Twitter. @sven110975

FATAL – 19 September 2011 — Boucan Canot beach, Reunion – surfer attacked

27 September, 2011

Boucan Canot beach, Reunion. -- Photo credit: Philippe Amiot

Mathieu Schiller, 32, was dragged off his surfboard while surfing off Boucan Canot beach on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion. The attack by a tiger shark reportedly lasted less than 30 seconds. His body was not recovered.

The incident happened on Monday 19 September 2011.

Schiller, a European team body boarding champion in 1995, was surfing with a group of surfers when the attack happened.

Witness report:

There were around 20 people in shallow water and about five surfers out deeper when it happened.

We saw the shark’s nose emerge and then the man just vanished. It was very sudden, then the animal just swam off.

According to other witness accounts the shark circled Schiller before moving in “with terrifying speed”.

Witness report:

I was waiting for a wave with my feet in the water. We saw the shark and the next thing I knew was that he screamed and raised his arm.

We then saw a cloud of red blood in the water where he had been.

Reports differ about what happened next. Some say the surfers then managed to get Schiller, who was suffering from a gaping wound in his leg, back onto his board. One  report says that the shark, which had become frenzied because of blood in the water, returned and hit the surfboard, knocking the victim back into the water. Another report says that a wave hit the board and Schiller fell off and disappeared beneath the surface.

Rescuers in a dinghy searching later for the body reported that a 4 metre bull shark had struck the dinghy trying to overturn it.

The Local

EuroSport Yahoo

Mail Online

PIC Source:
The Local

UPDATE – 2nd FATAL shark attack at Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles – 16 August 2011 – snorkeller attacked

17 August, 2011
Anse Lazio, Seychelles - scence of two fatal shark attacks

The beautiful Anse Lazio, Praslin island, Seychelles - scene of two fatal shark attacks in 16 days.

22 August 2011

Just to clarify, following conflicting reports, Ian Redmond was bitten on the back and arm, not on the leg as initially reported.

Also, researchers from South Africa’s Natal Sharks Board have examined a tooth that was embedded in the wound. They say the tooth is from a great white about 10 foot long.

19 August 2011.
BBC News online has a moving piece quoting the widow of Ian Redmond who died in the attack.


We have more details of this second fatal shark attack at Anse Lazio, Seychelles, widely recognised as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world

A British tourist Ian Martin Redmond, 30, died from a massive wound on his left leg after being bitten by a shark while snorkelling about 20 metres off Anse Lazio on Praslin Island in the Seychelles.

He was just married and was on honeymoon with his wife who was on the beach at the time of the attack.

It is not known what type of shark it was – although people commenting on SharkAttackMonitor suggest it was a either a bull shark or tiger shark, both of which are found around Seychelles.

A witness on the beach at the time of the incident

Anse Lazio is regarded as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

Anse Lazio (the beach on the left) is regarded as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

described the scene in a comment to SharkAttackMonitor.

I was seated on the beach when a lady beside me starting shouting something and pointing towards the water … I could see someone in the water with a mask and snorkel about 20 yards offshore.

Dinghies launched from both catamarans [anchored in the bay]. They circled the swimmer and pulled him into one of the dinghies.

He said when the dinghy landed on the beach he saw the shark attack victim in the boat “who was missing a huge chunk of flesh from his left leg, so much so that I could see the bone of his thigh”.

He was sickeningly pale, but still had his flippers on both feet. At this point a woman ran over and started screaming… she said “that’s my husband! We were just married…”

I wanted to burst into tears. People all over the beach where just hugging whoever was close to them or squatting in the sand pulling on their hair, or trying to keep any children from witnessing what was going on.

After some time, perhaps 5 minutes I saw someone doing chest compressions and that’s when I knew this was a fatal attack.

He said an ambulance arrived at the scene 30-40 minutes after the attack took place.

According to a report on Sky News online the Seychelles government issued a statement after an emergency meeting last night saying that “with immediate effect, the Seychelles Maritime Safety Administration has issued a temporary ban on swimming or entering the water in certain bays of the island of Praslin and islands off the coast of Praslin following two fatal shark attacks this month in the northwest area of the island”.

The report also said officials have reinforced a ban on the dumping of waste from yachts and other boats into coastal waters to prevent sharks being lured to beach areas.

Some people writing to SharkAttackMonitor after the first fatal attack at Anse Lazio on 1 August 2011 said crew had been dumping waste off boats anchored in the bay and that this had attracted the shark into shallow waters.

Sky News

PIC Sources:
Flikr – Stewart Morris photostream

FATAL – 2nd fatal shark attack on snorkeller at Anse Lazio, Seychelles – 16 August 2011 – witness account

16 August, 2011

This is a witness account (from one of several comments to SharkAttackMonitor ) of the second fatal shark attack in 16 days at Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles which took place today – 16 August 2011. Original comments are attached to this post: 

This witness account is from Ian who was on the beach when the attack took place.

I just wanted to give my account of what happened today. I was standing right on the beach during the whole thing. I am an American on honeymoon and decided to go to Anse Lazio because all the guide books say it is the best snorkeling in Seychelles. I had no idea there was a shark attack at this very beach earlier this month. It seems utterly unfathomable that 2 attacks in 1 month could occur on the ‘same’ beach.

This is everything I can remember…

I was seated on the beach when a lady beside me starting shouting something and pointing towards the water. I speak French and English and didn’t recognize it, but I think she was probably yelling that she saw fins?? Her husband ran towards the water and began waving at the nearby catamaran docked about 30 yards offshore. I could see someone in the water with a mask and snorkel about 20 yards offshore.

I didn’t know what was going on, but people started crowding around the edge of the water, and then dinghies launched from both catamarans. They circled the swimmer and pulled him into one of the dinghies.

At this point I thought maybe the swimmer had simply been too tired and called for rescue? Or maybe he had been stung by a sea urchin or something.

This is where honestly my nerves/emotions kicked in and my recollection may not be 100% accurate. I just want to write what I ‘feel’ I witnessed.

I believe the dinghy ended up taking the swimmer ‘back’ to the catamaran. It felt like there were nearly 10 or 15 minutes where people were just standing around on the beach, staring at the water and most of us were wondering what had just happened. Eventually the dinghy began heading back towards the beach. When it landed, many of the men on the beach ran up to help pull the dinghy to shore. This is when I saw the swimmer, who was missing a huge chunk of flesh from his left leg, so much so that I could see the bone of his thigh. He was sickeningly pale, but still had his flippers on both feet. At this point a woman ran over and started screaming… she said “that’s my husband! We were just married…”

I wanted to burst into tears. People all over the beach where just hugging whoever was close to them or squatting in the sand pulling on their hair, or trying to keep any children from witnessing what was going on.

After a few minutes some men moved him to the shore, I believe they tried to put a tourniquet on his leg, and I thought I saw a saline drip. At one point a man rushed over to help, I assume he was a doctor… I saw someone had a saline drip and they were elevating his right (uninjured) leg presumably to preserve blood.

After some time, perhaps 5 minutes I saw someone doing chest compressions and that’s when I knew this was a fatal attack. The ambulance arrived around 5 or 10 minutes even later than that (a full 30 to 40 minutes from the time of the accident).

I am so deeply saddened for the loss of the young woman. I had been snorkeling in the same area not 30 minutes before and was seconds away from actually jumping in the water to snorkel again (with my wife!) when the accident happened. I feel so lucky to be alive right now, I have never experienced anything like this.

My heart goes out to all those who were affected by today’s tragedy.

UPDATE – Seychelles FATAL shark attack – 1 August 2011

11 August, 2011

This is just a brief update to this story which has received a lot of attention on the SharkAttackMonitor.

The Shark Attack File names the victim who died following a shark attack at Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles as Nicolas Virolle, age 36.

From a series of witness accounts it is clear that he was snorkelling off Anse Lazio on Praslin island, Seychelles when the attack took place around 3.30pm on Monday 1 August 2011.

It is not known what species of shark it was or how big it was.

He suffered a massive bite to his left thigh – from the knee to the hip exposing the bone. He was brought ashore by two Seychellois in a small boat. It appears he died from blood loss before an ambulance could get to the scene.

Some locals say the shark was attracted into the bay by fish waste that was thrown overboard from boats anchored off Anse Lazio.

WITNESS ACCOUNT — FATAL attack in Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles — 1 August 2011

9 August, 2011

Leon witnessed the Fatal Shark attack on 1 August 2011 at Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles. I am reposting his comment.

I would like to express my condolences to the family and frends of the French tourist who died from a shark attack in Praslin.

I was an eyewitness of the attack and saw it happen from the beach. To be clear these wounds could NOT have been caused by a boat propeller. From the moment he screamed there were no boats around him in 30 meters , and they were all lying still. And he was NOT diving he was snorkeling , but was not wearing flippers only a mask and a pipe. People in the Seychelles want to keep it as small as possible only for tourism .

This is how it happened: From the water we heared someone scream at first we did not think it was real. But then we saw a large blood stain appear in the water. Immediately two Seychellios did pick him up out of the water with their boat and did bring him to shore . Where i and some few more people pulled the boat on shore. That’s when we saw the horrifying wound. His left upper leg was al gone from knee till hip only the bone and a small piece of skin were left . He was also missing his left pink. Somebody already called a ambulance but it took a long time before they arrived.

A woman did hold a umbrella to protect him from the sun and gave him some water. I don’t now if she did speak to him. I did not hear him talk, he was in total shock. It did also take a long time before anyone found some peaces of wood to use as a brancard.

I and four more people carried him from the boat to a pick up truck and laid him in the back. That’s when the ambulance arrived and they took over. But i think at that moment he already lost his life. May he rest in peace .

Even if they immediatly did send a chopper from Mahe to Praslin, I think he also would not have survived, because the wound was too big and he lost to much blood.

What maybe have caused this attack is that there were around 6 boats lying in Anse Lazio who probably dropped their fish disposal in the water, and that’s exactly what lures big sharks to these bays. That’s what people in the Seychelles should prevent  happening instead of acting if nothing has happened. — Leon

UPDATE to FATAL shark attack at Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles on 1 August 2011

7 August, 2011

This is a translation from the French, from a witness – Dominique Pothin – to the shark attack in Seychelles reported on SharkAttackMonitor.

The original French version is published on

UPDATE (8 August 2011)
Belo, who lives on the beach where the attack took place – wrote to SharkAttackMonitor. She said the French man was 35 years old. She sat with him when he was brought ashore. And that he died from a severe bite wound on his left leg. She said nothing like this has happened on this beach in the past 40 years.

This is the account of Dominique Pothin.

First, I would like to express my sincere condolences to the family of the French tourist who died from a shark attack in Praslin (Seychelles, Anse Lazio) August 1, 2011.

Let me emphasize that:

- This is not due to an accident caused by a boat propeller

- The tourist was not diving. He was about 40 or 50 m from the shore, maybe he had a mask and snorkel. We think not. He was swimming simply as would a woman, a child, my wife or myself or a baby with his parents.
(Il nageait tout simplement comme l’aurait fait une femme, un enfant, ma femme ou moi-même voire un bébé avec ses parents.)

- The ambulance took nearly 40 minutes to arrive at the scene. There was no aid station nearby, no stretcher.

Just two Seychellois in a boat were very brave (they deserve national recognition) and some people, in particular a woman who tried to help. The bite was so bad that there was probably nothing that could be done to save him.

Here is my testimony:

We were on the beach, before the “Bonbon Plume” renowned restaurant on the corner. There were dozens of tourists on the beach. Around 3:30 p.m. It had been beautiful since the morning. If there had been a flag, it would have been green. Shortly before the attack, we were in the water within 20 m from where the attack on the tourist took place. The sea was beautiful, clear water, pleasant. There were several catamarans anchored in the cove and even a kind of cruise ship and some boats.

The man was swimming in front of us, about 50 metres from the beach. He was not [spear] fishing underwater. There was no boat nearby. He therefore did not suffer, as I read in the press, a collision with a propeller. It seems to me that he had no mask or snorkel – in any case, certainly not flippers.

He was swimming a little further away from other swimmers but not very far from the shore. At one point he started screaming and even had some sort of nervous laughter bordering on hysteria. We thought he was an idiot.

He ended up calling “for help” and he clearly said “shark”. Then for a very short time we did not see him. He was taken to the bottom. The water become all red around him. He then reappeared. Two Seychellois in a fishing boat came to his rescue. The poor man barely had the strength to lift an arm. The two Seychellois, who showed exemplary courage, managed to get to him and bring him back to the beach. My wife, like many others, went to see the boat. The victim had almost no belly. I went to the restaurant and asked to call for help. Someone else had already called an ambulance. The victim remained in this boat more than half an hour – both legs and feet dangling over the side. That’s how I saw he had no fins. We were looking for a doctor. A lady, who could have been a doctor, finally got into the boat and she had an umbrella to protect the poor man from the sun. This gesture seemed ridiculous, but at the same time full of humanity.

This is presumably Belo – who commented on the original SharkAttackMonitor report:
In response to the tragic shark incident in Seychelles, if only to ease the loved ones left behind, i held the man’s hand and stayed with him until the ambulance came. May he rest in peace.

A tourist at the back of the boat said there was nothing left to do. The swimmer was dead. There was evidently no one in the water. People were standing on the beach, staring. Some cried, others were prostrate. I thought about my son, the fragility of things. We came straight back to the hotel. The taxi driver who brought us had also witnessed this terrible scene.

He had never heard of such an attack, much less at Praslin’s Anse Lazio. He told us that the shark was there because the boats anchored in the cove were dumping their waste overboard.

– Dominique Pothin


FATAL – 1 August 2011 – Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles – diver attacked

2 August, 2011

In a fairly sketchy AFP report published in Gulf News, it’s reported that a French scuba diver (a 36-year-old male, name not reported) died from wounds from a possible shark attack while diving off Anse Lazio, Praslin isle in the Seychelles archipelago. The incident occurred on Monday 1 August 2011.

Some officials speculated the wounds could have been caused by a boat propeller. An autopsy was being conducted today (2 August).

A police spokesperson said tourists on the beach tried to help him, “but he died as his injuries were serious”.

No other details were reported.

Will follow this report with an update later.

Gulf News


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