Briton in critical care after ‘unusual’ shark attack on Tobago

Last Updated: June 19, 2024By

Shocking Shark Encounter Sends Brit to ICU in Tobago

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In a wild turn of events on the sunny shores of Tobago, a British bloke finds himself battling for his life in intensive care after a jaw-dropping encounter with a shark.

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64-year-old Peter Smith, hailing from Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, took a hit from a bull shark that left him clinging to life with severe wounds to his left arm, left leg, and gut, as spilled by a local honcho.

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Farley Augustine, the bigwig at Tobago House of Assembly, spilled the beans in a Facebook vid, sharing that Smith was on vacay with his missus and mates, all geared up to jet back home on Friday.

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The savage showdown went down just 10 meters off the shimmering Great Courland Bay, also known as Turtle Beach, along Tobago’s northern coastline, as per Tobago’s Division of Tourism, Culture, Antiquities, and Transportation.

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The sirens blared, and the cavalry rushed in pronto. Once plucked from the jaws of peril, Smith got whisked off to the OR for a patch-up job.

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This hair-raising hullabaloo has thrown everyone for a loop. Tobago House of Assembly’s got Turtle Beach under lockdown until further notice and put the kibosh on beach bums hitting up the west coast. Even reef tours are on pause, according to the division’s spiel.

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They’ve even got drones prowling the scene, keeping tabs on any fishy business.

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“This is some bizarre biz,” the division exclaimed. “Tobago’s known for its chill vibes and pristine beaches… We’re pulling out all the stops to keep our visitors safe and sound.”

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Orion Jakerov, the water whiz at Starfish Hotel nearby, saw the whole shebang go down. He described the shark swooping in like a villain in the shallows while folks scrambled to fend it off.

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“I don’t reckon they saw it coming. They were just chilling waist-deep in the water, blissfully unaware. Next thing you know, jaws were on the loose,” Jakerov recounted to local broadcaster TTT Live.

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“Even as the shark was circling, folks were in there duking it out with the beast.”

A tidy sum of TT$10,000 (£1,175) was slapped on the shark’s head, though it got yanked back, revealed Farley Augustine, the big cheese himself.

Across the pond, the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office are rallying round Smith’s kin, keeping tabs on the local brass.

Shark run-ins aren’t exactly dime-a-dozen in Tobago. The bulk of the finned fracases tend to go down further north, in the heart of the Caribbean or off the US coasts, as per the International Shark Attack File.

In 2023, there were a grand total of 69 unprovoked shark skirmishes worldwide, according to the database. That’s about 63 tussles on average each year over the past half-decade. The lion’s share of these scrapes went down in the good ol’ US of A, with 36 uninvited nips.

Last year, there were 14 confirmed shark shindigs that led to the big sleep, 10 of which were considered out of the blue, the file revealed.

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