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Shark appears to kill woman in rare attack in Maine, authorities say

NBC News logo NBC News 7/28/2020 Tim Stelloh
a close up of a hillside next to a body of water © Provided by NBC News

Authorities said a woman appears to have been killed Monday by a shark in Maine, a state that researchers say has recorded only one confirmed unprovoked attack in nearly 200 years.

The Maine Marine Patrol said in a statement that the woman, who was not identified, was likely attacked while swimming near Bailey Island, northeast of Portland.

She was pronounced dead at the scene.

The patrol said an eyewitness reported seeing the attack. Kayakers brought the woman to shore, the statement said.


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Citing a witness, NBC affiliate WCSH reported that there were possibly two people in the water at the time of the attack. One was thrown into the air and suffered serious injuries, the witness said.

According to researchers at the Florida Museum of Natural History, which tracks shark attacks in the United States and around the world, the state has recorded only one attack since 1837. It’s unclear if that attack was fatal.

Attacks in the northeast are generally rare, with New York State and Massachusetts logging 18 between them, according to the database.

Florida has recorded 852 attacks, the most in the world, according to the database.

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