Man killed in shark attack while surfing off western Australia

By Tanalee Smith, AP
Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Man killed by shark while surfing in Australia

ADELAIDE, Australia — An Australian man died Tuesday after being attacked by a shark while surfing off the southwestern coast, police said.

The 31-year-old was attacked while surfing alone early in the morning at a beach near Gracetown, about 175 miles (280 kilometers) south of the Western Australia state capital of Perth.

A police spokeswoman told The Associated Press that the man received life-threatening injuries and died later at Margaret River Hospital. She spoke on condition of anonymity, citing department policy.

The spokeswoman said the man was from nearby Busselton. Police said his identity may be released later Tuesday.

Phil Shaw, regional manager of the state Department of Fisheries, said officers would try to determine if the shark was still in the area, what species it was and whether it posed a risk.

Great white sharks are common off that part of the coast.

In 2004, another local surfer died after a shark attack at a Gracetown beach.

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