Aussie tourist is killed by a shark in New Caledonia just steps from crowded pontoon – as horrified witnesses recall watching the animal viciously attack the helpless swimmer
- The man was swimming at Chateau-Royal beach
- Witnesses said the shark attacked him several times
- The 59-year-old died on shore from his injuries
An Australian man has died after being mauled by a shark while holidaying in New Caledonia.
The 59-year-old tourist was swimming near a crowded pontoon about 150 metres from shore at the Chateau-Royal beach, south of Nouméa, on Sunday afternoon around 5pm.
Horrified onlookers said the shark attacked the man, biting him several times on his leg and arms.
A jet-ski patrol rushed out to aide the man and return him to shore where CPR was performed.
However, despite the attempts of several paramedics, the man died from his severe injuries.
The Australian man was swimming near a crowded pontoon 150 metres from shore at the Chateau-Royal beach (pictured), south of Nouméa, when he was attacked
The 59-year-old man died from the severe injuries to his leg and arms, despite attempts by several paramedics to save his life
Mayor of Nouméa Sonia Lagarde closed most beaches in the area following the attack and ordered the capture of tiger sharks and bull sharks spotted in nearby waters.
Authorities used drones to search for the predator and spotted two sharks before the operation was called off at nightfall.
Local prosecutor Yves Dupas said an investigation would help identify the circumstances around the attack, which happened inside the zone watched over by lifeguards.
It comes after two swimmers were attacked by sharks at nearby beaches last month.
Authorities closed the beaches and ordered the capture of any bull sharks and tiger sharks spotted in nearby waters
All swimming beaches in New Caledonia’s capital city are closed until further notice (pictured)
New Caledonia lies 1,200km east of Australia (pictured) and is known for its palm-lined beaches, beautiful reefs and rich marine life
A 49-year-old swimmer was seriously injured by a shark at the same beach on January 29. Five days later, a foil surfer was charged by a shark but escaped without injury.
New Caledonia lies south of Vanuatu and 1,200km east of Australia. The French Pacific territory is known for its palm-lined beaches, beautiful reefs and rich marine life.
The Florida Museum’s International Shark Attack File ranks New Caledonia 13th in the world for the total number of shark attacks since 1958.