INJURED – 28 October 2011 – uShaka Marine World, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa – aquarist bitten

A brief report on South Africa’s East Coast Radio (ECR) quotes Dr Mark Penning,  the CEO of uShaka Marine World in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa as saying one of the divers at the marine theme park was bitten on the arm by a ragged tooth shark while doing routine work in the aquarium. The incident happened in the morning of 28 October 2011.

“Luckily he’s a tough guy. He’s in hospital, and he’s being very well looked after,” he said.

“This is not an aggressive shark, it’s not a species of shark that will deliberately go out and hunt a diver, but the animal got scared and it lashed out, and unfortunately his arm was in the way at that time.”

No other details were reported.

East Coast Radio

FATAL – 21 May 2011 – Leven Point, near Cape Vidal, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa – spearfisherman attacked

Warren Smart died from a shark attack while spearfishing

Warren Smart, 28, died from bite wounds to his thigh received from a shark attack while spearfishing at Leven Point, 23km north of Cape Vidal and 57km south of Sodwana, in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.

The incident happened on Saturday 21 May 2011.

The shark is presumed to have been a Zambezi (bull) shark.

Smart was diving with two friends when the attack happened around midday. His friends managed to hoist him onto the dive boat and they raced to shore. He died from blood loss while medics on shore were attending is wound.

According to media reports, Smart had speared a king mackerel about 12m down and was in the process of pulling it towards him to get it off the spear. But then the shark, which had been after the struggling fish, struck, biting Smart on the thigh.

His diving friend was quoted as saying: “It all happened in a split second. Warren did not see the shark in time.

“But by the time we pulled him into the boat, he had already lost so much blood from his artery.”

It took them about 40 minutes to reach the shore.

Ambulance services were waiting for them and an air ambulance arrived about five minutes later.

Medics tried to stabilise him but could not get a drip in because Smart’s veins had collapsed from a loss of blood.

Smart was declared dead an hour later, according to the report.



INJURED – 4 May 2011 – off Palm Beach, South Coast, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa – spearfisherman attacked

Trevor Burgher, 37, was bitten on the left calf while spearfishing with a friend near Palm Beach on the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The incident happened on 4 May 2011.

Burger told the Witness newspaper:

“I am so lucky. I felt the pressure on my leg. I felt the shark shake it but, as I turned around to look, the shark let go of my calf and simply swam away.”

“It was almost an investigative bite.”

Burger told the newspaper he was spearfishing in the early morning with a  friend and that he had just surfaced with a fish about 30 metres from their boat when the shark attacked him.

“We had bandages on the boat and then got to shore as fast as possible.”

He was taken to Netcare Margate Hospital where he received 58 stitches (another report says he received 24 stitches) and was reported in a stable condition.

No other details were reported.