Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Shark attack leaves fisherman dead

A kayak fisherman has died after a shark bit his dangling foot while fishing between Maui and Molokini

A kayak fisherman has died after a shark bit his dangling foot.

Patrick Briney, 57, of Stevenson, Washington, was attacked while fishing between Maui and Molokini, a small island less than three miles off the south-west coast of Maui that is popular for diving and snorkelling .

He was using artificial lures to attract baitfish, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources said. His fishing partner put on a tourniquet and sought help from a nearby charter tour boat.

The boat took them to shore, and Mr Briney was taken to hospital, but later died.

Though the attack happened far from shore, the public was advised to stay out of the water a mile north and a mile south of Makena State Recreation Area in south-west Maui.

There have been eight shark attacks near Maui this year and 13 statewide. On Friday, a woman was injured in a Maui attack.

"We are not sure why these bites are occurring more frequently than normal, especially around Maui," said department chairman William Aila. "That's why we are conducting a two-year study of shark behaviour around Maui that may give us better insights."

Over the last 20 years Hawaii has averaged about four unprovoked shark incidents a year.

In August, a German tourist died a week after losing her arm in a shark attack. Jana Lutteropp, 20, was snorkelling up to 100 yards off a beach in south-west Maui when the shark bit off her right arm.

Before her death, the last shark attack fatality in Hawaii was in 2004, when a tiger shark bit Willis McInnis' leg while he was surfing in Maui.

Isaac Brumaghim knows first-hand the dangers of kayak fishing, which he says is growing in popularity. He was fishing off Oahu's west coast in April when a camera mounted on his kayak captured footage of a 9ft shark jumping up and chomping on the tuna he was reeling in.

Sharks are "an absolute danger, every single day", he said. "You have to respect the fact they can bite you at any time."

He said bait in the water could easily attract them. "Just a little bit of blood, a little meat in the water, that's all you need," he said. "It's like dogs out there."

AP

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