Woman Survives Shark Attack in Australia

Reef shark strikes off northwest coast

Reef shark

Reef shark.     Photo: Matt9122/ Shutterstock.com

A 60-year-old woman survived an attack by a 39-inch reef shark off Australia’s northwest coast on Monday.

According to the Associated Press, the woman and her partner were snorkeling about 40 yards offshore. "The shark initially showed signs of aggression toward him, then turned and bit the woman on the arm," said Lisa Clack, Shark Response Unit manager for the Fisheries Department.

The woman was flown from Exmouth to Perth for surgery on her right arm; her injuries are described by the Royal Flying Doctor Service as “serious but not life threatening.”

According to the Florida Museum of Natural History’s International Shark Attack File, 65 people have been attacked in Western Australia since 1700. Fourteen of those attacks have been fatal; the last fatality was in 2012.

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