Fatal shark attack at Port St Johns

2014-03-22 20:57

Johannesburg - Another fatal shark attack has taken place at Port St Johns’ notorious Second Beach.

Resident Cat Yazbek told City Press the bather was taken by a shark at the beach shortly before 15:00.

“The person is dead. The body is floating round the point. It’s horrible,” said Yazbek.

Her partner, Michael Gatke, said the adult had been swimming at Second Beach along with a group of other people when the attack took place.

He said they had called the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) to try and recover the body.

Today’s is the eighth fatal shark attack at Second Beach in five years.

Spokesperson for NSRI Craig Lambinon said the victim was 72-year-old Austrian tourist, who was travelling with a tour group and his wife.

“Police have opened an inquest docket and the Austrian Consulate and the department of international relations and co-operation are informed.”

Lambinon said the species of the shark that attacked the man was not known.

On Christmas Day 2012, the notorious but highly popular beach – one of the jewels of the former Transkei’s Wild Coast – claimed its seventh victim since the current spate of fatal attacks began five years ago.

Liya Sibili, 22, from Ntsimbini, a rural village about 35km inland from Port St Johns, was taken by a shark in waist-deep water at Second Beach at around 16:20.

Only his bathing trunks were recovered despite a three-day search for his body. Last March, 39-year-old Fundile Nodumla survived an attack at the same beach.

  • Peter William - 2014-03-22 21:11

    Oh my gosh that is sad, all the way from Austria to die in Africa. Sympathies to his wife and friends

      AsGodIsMyWitness - 2014-03-25 05:34

      Shelly, surely that is a bit harsh. We should always pass on our sympathies, irrespective of whether they were being silly or not. Are you saying that if your child did something silly and died, like play on the railway tracks and get hit by the loco, we should not sympathise with you? Hmmm..... I interestingly discovered last December that the shark nets in Natal are not designed to deter sharks, but to catch them - they are nothing more than fishing nets designed to catch fish, which are then either released if still alive, or dissected if dead..... So do we put up nets and catch sharks, for the sake of bathers and the livelihood of the coastal towns, or keep the seas open for the fish? We need only remember that the Natal coast experienced enormous economic impact when there we many shark attacks in a short period of time (pre-nets) - non-local bathers simply did not come to the beach towns.

  • Gareth De Kock - 2014-03-22 21:37

    Watch documentary's like whale wars- you will see how fished out the sea is- and sharks need to eat- so where do they turn to? shallow waters! its only as a result of mans greed and lust for more commercial fishing that this happens. There was an article recently measuring the shoals left in the ocean. they estimate that the Combined mass of all boats in the water is higher than fish. Really- man has dominated man to his injury!

      Abanya Way - 2014-03-23 07:41

      Now here is an interesting thing. Research shows that the fish stocks are replenishing off the Somalian coast because piracy chased away the big factory ships. The trouble is that those ships are now off the SA coast and we don't have an effective navy to protect our shores. Why has the famous sardine run failed in the last 7 or 8 years? Makes you think doesn't it?

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-23 23:23

      Amen to that Gareth....YOU ARE RIGHT EXACTLY ON THE MONEY WITH WHAT YOU JUST SAID"!!! I have been saying the SAME EXACT thing for the last few years now!!

  • Andrea Thompson - 2014-03-22 22:16

    We take risks everyday but we all know that there is an element of real danger involved when swimming in the sea. I wish that people could just appreciate the fact that the sea is not our natural habitat. It's too easy to make sharks out to be perpetrators.

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-23 23:26

      Amen to that Andrea......I couldn't agree with you more"!!!

  • belnick - 2014-03-22 22:31

    Sharks are flesh eaters of any kind. BEWARE!!!! Where you swim and how far to go.

      Darryll Robertson - 2014-03-23 07:05

      Sharks do NOT eat humans, they are repelled by the taste of human blood - FACT - unfortunately they will taste then they swim away and it is the bite that kills - from blood loss.

  • ToldYouSo - 2014-03-22 22:45

    This seems to be a hotspot for shark attacks.. Wonder what the draw card is for this? RIP bather.

      Reagan Hendricks - 2014-03-22 23:04

      smelly feet...sharks are attracted to smelly feet.

      yaya188 - 2014-03-23 10:46

      Sewage leaking into the sea at the river mouth, it is hideous........cattle slaughtered for ritual ceremonies and affal thrown into the sea there.

  • Matthew TheMatt Dickason - 2014-03-23 01:29

    No chop face... it's their home and we're guests. Ffs shark nets do more harm than good. If a few people get eaten every year is a good thing. ..

      Gwilym John Howes - 2014-03-23 12:08

      Agree. Why don't you volunteer to show everyone else how it is done?

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-24 00:22

      LOL.....what does "Chop Face" mean....."Chop Stick" face?? :-)

  • Aleck Pfumo - 2014-03-23 06:51

    The Ocean is just another world where it is governed by its own leaders,going there for bathing is a risky adventure,May the victim rest in peace.

  • Fred Landini - 2014-03-23 07:50

    Its because all the river systems in the area are silted up or closed, bull sharks congregate to enter the mzimwubu river to spawn, very deep drop off with shallow banks best place to ambush prey, open lake st lucia's mouth and see what a major differance this will make! This attack 90% chance it was a zambizi!

      yaya188 - 2014-03-23 10:47

      So right on!

      Gavin Young - 2014-03-23 11:58

      Exactly! At least one sensible contribution

  • Obadia Kgopolo Segwape - 2014-03-23 08:04

    i feel sory for the sharks they are in danger now

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-23 23:51

      Nah......only 100,000,000 ONE HUNDRED MILLION A YEAR, EVERY DAM YEAR just for freaking Chinese delicacy tasteless "shark-fin soup"!!!!!

      Spidjo Nathi - 2014-08-11 10:14

      Danger of what? because I do not see any one who is trying to make this safe, there is no net, and these sharks are killing people and disappear because there are many lakes on this sea, it's unfortunately for them bcz they can attack me,I have never swim here,I am just watching the people who do not live here when they swim,becuase they do not listen when someone tell them that it dangerous,there are a lot of sharks,that are dangerous like 'Tiger Shark'

  • Paul Gaydon - 2014-03-23 08:33

    Sibu - I believe it may be the sewage that pours into the sea there. These attacks didnt take place a decade ago. I agree over Zuma's pool. He is selfish to want so much and it worries me that he has the police shooting at service delivery protesters. Time are getting very bad. Please get your friends to vote against ANC!

      Reagan Hendricks - 2014-03-23 09:44

      poor sharks are eating our shyt eh and getting violent. someone should tell the violence begets violence.

  • Linda Wilken - 2014-03-23 08:54

    Sorry for the death of the bather yet when we venture into the homes of these creatures we have to expect them to see us as either food or a threat, now sharks are going to be hunted as though they're evil again, it's warped to blame the shark for the attack.

      Gwilym John Howes - 2014-03-23 12:22

      Do you swat flies? Do you spray mosquitoes? Why? They are just doing what they are meant to do. Same as sharks. And I suppose they are also in their natural environment. Are we not encroaching on their territory? Who are we to displace them, or even worse, kill them? But we do. Most people get rid of flies and mosquitoes, because they make life unpleasant. So why are sharks different? Is it the size?

      Gareth Nicholson - 2014-03-24 10:42

      Ya cool Gwilym, lets remove all the roads from our country or the electrical lines. They kill people to but we can accept that driving on the road is a risk we take every day we drive to work. Animals do not have the ability to reason, most cases of shark attacks are a case of mistaken identity, and believe it or not if there were still plains of animals roaming about where all of our human developments have gone up, the mozzies and flies would be bothering them and not us. Same concept, so use your pip and don't be a chop!

  • Tina-Marie Trevenen - 2014-03-23 11:25

    I live on a farm near Port St Johns and would not dream of swimming anywhere near those beaches! Tourism has taken a serious knock in the area. Life Guard's are not paid and the public do not listen to them when they are told to get out of the water anyway... Few months ago the army were training their soldiers by throwing them into the mouth of the river and making them swim back to shore - the mouth of the river is full up with sharks!

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-23 23:46

      Well then its a GOOD THING that there wasn't any shark attacks on any of the army soldiers, because if there was, "They would probably whip out their M-60's and machine gunned all of the sharks down like domino's"!!!!

  • Bernie Evans - 2014-03-23 13:27

    R.I.P. This is a tour group,surely they are told by the tour leader beware" SHARKS"?There must be some signage up somewhere,Port St Johns has a history for these great creatures of the oceans.

      Philip du Toit - 2014-03-24 09:09

      there was a signage and the hotel workers warned them to not swim in those conditions this is all according to beeld this morning

  • Phil Hair - 2014-03-23 20:13

    After 8 shark attacks LOTS of signage is needed to warn people of this. Tourists know even less than our own people of the dangers at this beach!!!!! So sad for this family!

      Paul Grimm - 2014-03-24 00:14

      Do you or anyone else know if the "SHARK SPOTTERS" were "ON DUTY" on the high up cliffs with their binoculars when this shark attack happened yesterday?????

  • Johan Brand - 2014-03-24 08:57

    It is so easy for people to say the sea is not our natural habitat, we should stay out etc.when they themselves have no reason to get near the sea, ever. Most of them most likely from Gauteng. You have to remember the ocean is used for lots of different purposes ranging from leisure to commercial, and to tell people who love the ocean or have to use it for a living to stay out because "habitat this" and "unnatural that" is ludicrous. Flying in a plane or even driving in a car is not our natural environment either for that matter. I can assure you most every person entering the ocean is aware of the risks, and the reward for doing what he/she is doing offsets the risks. Just for the record, I have had three close encounters with great whites in my surfing and diving "career", and never the did the shark seem interested in me. I would also hate to see this marvelous creature go extinct, and am all for the preservation of sharks.

      Dianna Sheehan - 2014-03-24 09:37

      Hooray somebody making sense ! AT LAST! Whats with the kill attitude - it is sickening.

      Gareth Nicholson - 2014-03-24 11:12

      I like your point about aeroplanes and nonsense. Since the year 1580, 569 people have been killed by sharks in the entire world. To put this in perspective with risks we take in our lives other than swimming in the ocean: In 1985 520 people died in a single plane crash, in 2011 alone 14 000 people were killed on SA roads. With these stats in mind is it even worth our while worrying about shark attacks?

      Michael Ross - 2014-03-24 13:11

      Johan, good point; so many surfers are right out there, exposed and close to the sharks in deep water, just before and amongst the breakers, but they usually aren't even bothered by sharks. A couple of years ago I had an old style 2-fin surfboard and was at Muizenberg for the Christmas holiday, and aside from a couple of minor blue-bottle stings, there was only one strange incident where I dropped down off my board after riding a low wave a few meters, and my heel knocked something semi-hard, like a person's body, at about 1.5m while going down, and though I knocked a swimmer or surfer, and immediately wanted to apologize; but there wasn't anyone near me and nobody surfaced. I dipped back down and found myself deep underwater, unable to touch the bottom at about 2.2m (I'm 1.74m) so I freaked a bit, got back on my board, sat up and checked around to look for a surfboard, or a person, or any sign that there was a human near me, but couldn't find one. So it may have been a shark, it might have been a seal, it could even have been a fair-sized dead jellyfish (when their stingers have been torn off by strong sea swells or through whatever means, their blobby jelly body tend to wash up on beaches and its got a fairly tough consistency. Either way, if it was a shark, sorry to the beastie, and "thanks for not chewing on me that Summer"! :)

      Gwilym John Howes - 2014-03-25 18:39

      Johan, I really like your analogy of the planes and cars. Definitely also not our natural habitat. We should also get rid of all the cities, as they are also encroaching on the habitat of some other creatures - sarcasm. No, the sea is NOT the preserve of the sharks and fishes. The WORLD belongs to those that want to use it. No one species has the 'right' to the sea, and all others need to stay out!

  • Haydn Russell - 2014-03-24 10:52

    Anyone that swims or surfs there is crazy! That beach must have one of, if not, the highest shark attack fatality rates anywhere in the world at the moment.

  • Zanele Mahlangu - 2014-03-24 11:18

    This attack reminds me of Trevoh Noah....Shacks are confused,they see human as a.....? RIP

  • Dazza Oliver - 2014-03-24 12:29

    8... in 5 years.. by golly that's high! Alert the media! *sarcasm sign*

  • CelesteH - 2014-03-24 13:16

    OMG!!! WHAAAT?????? There was a shark in the sea? how did this happen? (sarcasm)

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