Surfer dies after shark attack

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The Independent Online

A man has died after being attacked by a shark while surfing off the south-western coast of Australia today, police said.

The 31-year-old was attacked while surfing alone early in the morning at a beach near Gracetown, about 175 miles south of Perth.

A police spokeswoman said the man, an Australian, received life-threatening injuries and died later at Margaret River Hospital.

The spokeswoman said the man was from nearby Busselton, and his identity may be released later today.

Phil Shaw, regional manager of the state Department of Fisheries, said officers would try to determine if the shark was still in the area, what species it was and whether it posed a risk.

Great white sharks are common off that part of the coast.

In 2004, another local surfer died after a shark attack at a Gracetown beach.