Shark attack on NSW north coast leaves surfer with severe leg injuries
A surfer has suffered severe lacerations to her leg in a shark attack at Shelly Beach in Port Macquarie, on the NSW north coast.
The woman, aged in her early 20s, was treated by paramedics who were called to the beach just after 9.30am today, NSW Ambulance said.
She was taken to Port Macquarie Base Hospital and later airlifted to Newcastle Hospital, where she will undergo surgery.
"The patient suffered severe lacerations to her right leg," said NSW Ambulance duty operations manager Inspector Andrew Beverley.
The woman was bitten on the leg a number of times while surfing, a spokesman for Surf Lifesaving Australia (SLA) said.
The shark was a juvenile great white shark about 2 to 3 metres in length, the spokesman said.
Beaches in the area have been closed.
The woman's companion, who was surfing nearby, punched the shark repeatedly until it let go, police and surfers said.
"A surfer who witnessed the attack responded quickly to assist the woman by hitting the shark repeatedly until it released the woman's leg," Steven Pearce, CEO of Surf Life Saving NSW, said.
The man helped the woman out of the water and up the beach to a waiting ambulance.
NSW paramedics have also praised people on the beach who helped the victim.
"The bystanders on scene that rendered assistance should be commended. They did an amazing job before we arrived," Inspector Beverley said.
More to come.
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