A shark killed a film director in New Zealand on Wednesday in the first fatal attack since 1976.
The shark attack victim was Adam Strange, 46, an award-winning film commercial maker. The country’s beaches were closed following the attack.
The Inquisitr previously reported that the attack happened just 650 feet from the shoreline. Police took to an inflatable raft to shoot the shark and attempt to rescue the swimmer.
The lifeguards who attempted the rescue were friends with Strange and considered him a strong and capable swimmer, notes The Guardian.
The filmmaker’s work had been shortlisted for advertising awards at Cannes and the London International Advertising Awards. His first feature, Aphrodite’s Farm, also took home a short film award at the Berlin film festival.
The shark attack that killed the film director happened just miles from his home. A statement from his wife, Meg, and their family, read:
“We are in deep shock and are still trying to contact overseas family members.”
Authorities say that the shark, believed to be about 14 feet long, attacked and then disappeared after police fired gunshots at it. The Philadelphia Inquirer adds that only about 12 to 14 people have been killed by sharks in New Zealand since records started in the 1830s.
About 200 people were on Muriwai Beach near Auckland when the shark killed film director Adam Strange. The beach was closed after the attack. Eyewitnesses to the gruesome attack believed the shark involved to be a great white, though that has not been confirmed.
Other eyewitnesses also reported seeing more than one shark involved in the attack, though only one large shark was seen on film swimming in the area after the attack. One witness, Pio Mosie, was fishing off the beach when the shark attacked. He recalled:
“All I was thinking was I wanted to jump in the water and help but I didn’t want to get attacked by a shark too.”
All beaches in New Zealand will be closed for two days after the shark attack killed Strange. A volunteer lifeguard at Muriwai Beach, Tim Jago, stated, “They’ve got every ‘beach closed’ sign they can get their hands on.”