A 37-year-old Zimbabwean tourist died after being attacked by a shark while swimming off Cape Town’s Fish Hoek beach today, South Africa’s National Sea Rescue Institute said.
“There were plenty of eyewitnesses” to the attack, Ian Klopper, an official with the institute, said in a telephone interview from the city. “There is no chance of survival.”
The attack took place shortly before 4 p.m. local time, he said. A helicopter and four boats were used to search for the victim’s remains. It is unclear what type of shark attacked the man, Mark Dotchin, chairman of the Western Cape province’s lifesaving association, said in a telephone interview.
“As of now, no body has been found,” Dotchin said. “There was a lot of blood in the water.”
Great White Sharks, which can grow to 6 meters (19.7 feet) in length and weigh 3 metric tons (6,614 pounds), have been responsible for most of the attacks that have taken place off Cape Town’s beaches in the past.
The Zimbabwean was swimming about 20 meters offshore when he was attacked, Talk Radio 702, a Johannesburg-based broadcaster, reported. His wife witnessed the incident and is receiving trauma counseling, it said.