Sixty injured in piranha attack on Christmas Day
A seven-year-old girl lost part of her finger in the attack by a shoal of the meat-eating fish
Heather Saul is a digital reporter for The Independent, currently working on the People desk. She has written news and features across a number of topics, paying particular attention to the activities of Isis and events in Iraq, Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Thursday 26 December 2013
At least 60 swimmers have been injured in a piranha attack on an Argentine beach on Christmas Day.
The attack involved more than 20 children, with one seven-year-old girl losing part of one of her fingers and another boy sustaining an open fracture to his hand by the shoal of meat-eating fish. Other victims suffered bites to their feet and hands by the palometas, a cousin of the piranha.
Swimmers had been trying to cool down in the 40C heatwave when some suddenly ran out of the water, bleeding and shouting for help, witnesses told La Capital newspaper. Paramedics were called to attend the scene and treat the most seriously injured by coast guards while police closed down the beach.
Paramedic Gustavo Centurion described the fish as “very aggressive", the newspaper reported, which may have been a product of the sweltering heat.
Federico Cornier, the director of emergency services in the city of Rosario spoke on television and said: "This is not normal. It's normal for there to be an isolated bite or injury, but the magnitude in this case was great ... this is an exceptional event."
The piranhas are believed to have been attracted to the area by bait left behind by local fisherman at the popular Parana River beach in the city of Rosario, about 300 miles north of Buenos Aires.
The attack was described as a rarity by local government spokesman Ricardo Biasatti.
- 1 The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
- 2 Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
- 3 Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
- 4 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 5 iPhone 5c to be discontinued, no iPhone 6c to replace it
Spain accused of 'provocation' after letting Russian submarine refuel off Gibraltar
The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
Allonautilus scrobiculatus: World's 'rarest' creature spotted for only the third time ever
Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
Bangkok Bomb: Thai police name Adem Karadag as suspect arrested over blast that killed 20
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn voters most likely to believe 'world is controlled by a secretive elite'
£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...