SYDNEY – A 59-year-old man is in critical condition after a shark attacked him at the Great Barrier Reef in Australia on Sunday near the town of Townsville in north Queensland, rescuers said.
Paramedics transported the man from Britomart Reef to Townsville Hospital where he is being treated for serious injuries.
The man had been underwater fishing near the reef before being attacked around noon, media reported.
“There was clearly evidence of a very large shark bite in the patient’s upper thigh, in the pelvic region,” said David Humphreys, a physician from LifeFlight Australia.
“He remained in critical condition after our procedures and is currently undergoing emergency surgery here at the hospital. “
Download the NBC News app for the latest news and politics
According to the Taronga Conservation Society Australia, there have been seven fatal unprovoked shark attacks in Australia this year, including two in Queensland.
Australia ranked behind the United States only in the number of unprovoked shark encounters with humans in 2019, according to the University of Florida’s International Shark Attack File.