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A shark, estimated to be about 4.5m long, attacked a 29-year-old holidaymaker late Friday afternoon while he was surfing with friends at Sand Beach in Jongensfontein, about 20km from Stilbaai.
Jacques Mostert of Centurion survived the attack, but has been admitted to the intensive care unit of Mossel Bay’s Bayview Hospital.
He sutained severe lacerations to his upper left leg and left knee.
He had been on holiday with friends.
NSRI Stilbaai commander Rico Menezies said that when they arrived at the scene, Mostert was conscious but had lost a lot of blood.
Menezies said Mostert’s friends had witnessed the attack and removed him from the water.
“Based on the eye-witness accounts and from the bite marks, we estimate the shark to have been between 4 and 4.5m long, but the species of shark has not yet been confirmed,” he said.
He said NSRI medics and a local doctor, Pieter Joubert, treated Mostert at the scene and stabilised him.
Oxygen therapy, tourniquet bandaging and blood transfusion were used to compensate for the huge blood loss.
An ER24 ambulance took Mostert to hospital where he was in a serious but stable condition last night.
“The parents of the victim have been informed and they are reassured that their son is doing well and is in good care,” Menezies added.
Weekend Argus has reported that deaths caused by shark attacks in the Western Cape have tripled in the 20 years since caged shark diving became a commercial enterprise.
According to the Shark Attack File, 16 deaths have been reported since 1992, when caged shark diving started.
There were 54 shark-related incidents over the 20-year period from 1992 to 2012.
Camps Bay bodyboarder David Lilienfeld was killed in a shark attack in Kogel Bay in April.