A swimmer was savaged by a shark yesterday off the beach at Fish Hoek in Cape Town. Luckily he was not killed and was rescued in the water by two good Samaritans.

The beach was officially closed after shark spotters had seen a large shark close to the shore earlier in the day. The man, identified as Michael Cohen was either unaware that the beach had been closed, or had chosen to ignore the warning.

According to the NSRI, Cohen’s right leg had been bitten off above the knee during the attack and that his left leg was severely mauled as well. He was stabilized on the beach before being taken to hospital.

The section of beach where Cohen was attacked is also where Tyna Webb was killed by a huge Great White Shark in November 2004 whilst swimming about 100 m offshore.

This is the second serious shark attack in South Africa recently, following the fatal attack on Tim Van Heerden in Plettenberg Bay, when a 2 m Great White bit him while he was surfing at Lookout Beach.

In both instances the victims made it back to shore, indicating that the sharks had mistaken them as prey.

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