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Shark attack: Man suffers 'eight-hour' ordeal

BBC News logo BBC News 22/01/2017

An Australian diver who was attacked by a shark before being rescued and taken to a remote island had to wait more than eight hours to receive treatment for his wounds, emergency services say.

Great white catching a decoy © Getty Images Great white catching a decoy

The scuba diver was attacked in a remote area off the north Queensland coast. Media reports say bad weather hampered the rescue effort.

The man, 55, suffered injuries to his hand, chest and stomach.

He is now reported to be in a stable condition in hospital.

Australia's north coast local waters shark tagging program © BBC Australia's north coast local waters shark tagging program

An emergency services spokesman told ABC News that the injured man received treatment on his boat after been picked up near an island in the Torres Strait.

Medics performed first aid to stem the bleeding, but it took about five hours to reach a medical clinic on nearby Murray Island. It is not clear what type of shark was responsible for the attack.

The spokesman said bad weather meant it then took another three hours for a rescue helicopter to arrive from Horn Island and take him to Thursday Island.

Map © BBC Map

Queensland Ambulance Service Supervisor Kirk Binnington told the Sydney Morning Herald that the attack occurred 65 nautical miles (75 miles; 120km) east of Murray Island.

"You can't get more remote than that," Mr Binnington said.

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