A British man on his honeymoon has been killed by a shark in the Seychelles, less than a fortnight after a French tourist was also fatally bitten in the waters off the same island.
The 30-year-old, named as Ian Redmond from Lancashire, was attacked on Tuesday while his bride was sunbathing on the shore, according to reports.
The shark struck in the waters off Anse Lazio beach on the island of Praslin, the second largest in the Indian Ocean archipelago and a popular destination with honeymooning Britons.
A tourist in a dinghy dragged the man on board and brought him ashore and another holidaymaker then tried to save his life, according to a report in the Daily Mail.
“We heard screaming and people started running down the beach towards the water,” an American tourist was quoted as saying. “Someone had seen a fin sticking out of the water, and then we saw a dinghy pulling a man from the water.
“I saw the swimmer, who was missing a huge chunk of flesh from his left leg, so much so that I could see the bone of his thigh. He was sickeningly pale, but still had his flippers on both feet.
“At this point a woman ran over and started screaming. She said: ‘That’s my husband! We were just married.’
“Someone grabbed her and tried to keep her away. People all over the beach were just hugging whoever was close to them or trying to keep any children from witnessing what was going on.”
Authorities in the Seychelles have asked for help from shark experts in South Africa to identify the creature, and a temporary ban on swimming or entering the waters around parts of Praslin has been ordered.
The Seychelles minister for home affairs and environment, Joel Morgan, also held an emergency meeting in the capital Victoria as the government tried to limit the potential damage to the tourism industry, the country’s main source of foreign exchange.
The Seychelles’ profile was given a boost in the UK when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge spent their honeymoon on North Island in May.
Alain St Ange, the head of the Seychelles tourism board, told the Daily Telegraph: “It was a freak accident. We are closing the beaches pending the arrival of experts from South Africa.”
Fatal shark attacks in the Seychelles are thought to be rare – prior to the death of the French tourist the last recorded fatal attack there was recorded in 1963, according to local media reports.
The Foreign Office said: “We can confirm the death of a British national in the Seychelles. We are providing consular assistance to the next of kin.”
The French tourist who died while snorkelling on 1 August was named in the Seychelles media as Nicolas François Virolle, 36. Other tourists on the beach were said to have hauled his body from the sea but he died from a massive loss of blood.