Shark kills teenager who jumped into river to swim with dolphins
Published: 05/02/2023- 16:09
Updated: 05/02/2023- 16:10
A shark killed a teenager after she reportedly jumped into a river to swim with dolphins, Australian police have said.
Officials in Western Australia’s Perth say the girl, 16 was bitten by an unknown species of shark while jet-skiing with friends on the Swan River.
It is thought she was trying to swim near a pod of dolphins when the attack took place.
Police say the girl was pulled from the water but died from her injuries at the scene
Paul Robinson, acting police inspector for the Fremantle district said the girl was pulled from the water but died from her injuries at the scene.
“It’s very early on, what we’re being advised is that she was with friends on the river,” he told a news conference.
“They were on jet skis. Possibly a pod of dolphins were being seen nearby and the young female jumped in to swim nearby the dolphins.”
Describing it as a “very, very traumatic incident,” Robinson said the family of the girl, who was from Perth, was “absolutely devastated by the news”.
The state government is warning people to take “additional caution” in the Swan River as experts advise that it was unusual for sharks to be found in that part of the river.
The fatal shark attack in the Swan River was the first since January 1923 when a 13-year-old boy was killed in the Perth suburb of Claremont, according to reports at the time and a database run by Taronga Conservation Society.
The fatal shark attack in Swan River was the first since 1923
According to the database, the last fatal attack in any Australian river was in 1960 when a 3.3 metres (nearly 11ft) bull shark killed a snorkeller at Roseville Bridge in Sydney.
Simon Nellist, a 35-year-old British diving instructor was also killed in the first such shark attack in the city since 1963 in February last year near Sydney’s Little Bay Beach.
A total of 4.5 million Australians swim regularly and at least 500,000 surf, according to Sports Australia.