Fatal Shark Attack Closes Beaches in Sydney for the First Time in 60 Years


    A fatal shark attack caused several beaches in Sydney, including the famous Bondi and Bronte, beaches to close. The shark attack was the first for the city’s beaches in 60 years.

    To bait the shark, drumlines have been set up near the attack site. Officials have also deployed drones to search the area for the shark to see if it is still near.

    On Wednesday afternoon, a video surfaced online of a shark attack off Little Bay beach, about 12 miles south of the largest city in Australia and near the entrance of Botany Bay. The man has been identified as Simon Nellist, 35, a British expatriate. Nellist was engaged to be married and was living in the Wolli Creek area in Sydney. He was reportedly training for a charity swim event.

    “This has been a complete shock for our community,” Dylan Parker, the mayor of Randwick Council, which includes Little Bay, told Reuters. “Our coastline is our back yard, and to have a tragic death under such horrifying circumstances is completely shocking.”

    The attack happened days before the Murray Rose Malabar Magic Ocean Swim. The charity event usually has thousands of attendees swimming at a neighboring beach. If the event had to be postponed, the new date is March 6. Organizers said they were monitoring the situation.

    Shark biologists believe that a white shark at least 9.8 feet was responsible for the attack, a spokesperson for the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries said. Data showed the attack on Nellist was the first shark attack in Sydney since 1963.

    As temperatures hovered around 86 degrees on a hot summer day, authorities have ordered people to remain out of the water.

    “A few crazy surfers still go out and take the risk, but most of us take notice and just stay out of the water until the sharks have gone. It’s a lot more dangerous driving to be quite honest,” local resident Karen Romalis told Reuters.


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