Queensland shark attack: Two British men injured at tourist spot

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Alistair Raddon and Danny MaggsImage source, Facebook
Image caption,
Alistair Raddon (left) and Danny Maggs were snorkelling in Queensland's Whitsunday Islands when they were attacked

Two British tourists have been seriously injured in a shark attack at a popular holiday spot in Australia.

Alistair Raddon, 28, from Southampton, and Danny Maggs, from Plymouth, were swimming in Queensland's Whitsunday Islands when they were attacked.

The shark severed Mr Raddon's foot and left Mr Maggs, 22, with leg wounds, paramedics said.

They were taken by a tour boat to shore and treated there, before being flown to hospital in a stable condition.

The Whitsunday Islands - near the Great Barrier Reef - have seen other shark attacks in recent times.


Authorities said both men had been snorkelling on a day cruise.

"One of the male patients was attacked first and the shark is believed to have returned and come back and attacked the second patient," a Queensland Ambulance Service spokeswoman said.

Image source, Danny Maggs/Instagram
Image caption,
Mr Maggs posted a photograph on Instagram after the attack

Jamie Dart, a friend of Mr Maggs, said he had been in touch with the 22-year-old's parents who told him he was recovering from surgery on his leg.

He said: "He's in high spirits. A bit shaken up but doing well, considering. He's a great guy with a zest for life."

Taylor Morgan, who described Mr Maggs as one of his closest friends, had been due to fly from Thailand to Cairns, Queensland, to meet him on Friday.

He said: "I've spoken to Danny. He seems himself and I can imagine he's very shook up.

"At first I was so shocked, I was panicking. I'm just relieved that he's OK, that he's still with us."

Central Queensland Rescue said the men had told its helicopter crew they were "wrestling and thrashing about in the water" when the attack happened at Hook Passage.

The location is about 10km (six miles) from where an Australian man was fatally bitten by a shark last November.

The islands also saw two other attacks within 24 hours in September last year. Both victims survived, although one - a 12-year-old girl - later had a leg amputated.

Media caption,

Queensland Ambulance Service said the shark attacked one man, then a second victim

In response to those incidents, authorities culled six sharks in the area and controversially installed drum lines - baited hooks which are suspended underwater. The drum lines were later removed due to their impact on other marine life.

At the time, experts said there was insufficient evidence to explain why the attacks had occurred in the same area. Sharks can be drawn by fishing activity or dirty water, and tend to be more active during dusk.

Unprovoked shark attacks have injured 10 people in Australia this year, according to the Australian Shark Attack File.

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