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29th Apr 2024

British man injured in shark attack is now ‘able to communicate’

Charlie Herbert

tobago shark attack

His wife has given an update on his condition

A British man who was seriously injured a shark attack in Tobago is “able to communicate” and “aware of what is happening,” his wife has said.

Peter Smith was on the Caribbean island with his wife Jo and friends when he was attacked in Courland Bay, at 09:15 local time on Friday morning (April 26).

The attack took place just a few metres away from the shore. Local authorities said the 64-year-old was receiving critical care for serious injuries to his left arm, left leg and stomach.

Smith is still in intensive care at Scarborough General Hospital on the island, but his wife has said he is now “able to communicate” and is “aware of what is happening.”

She said: “Peter has suffered damage to his left arm and leg, puncture wounds to the abdomen and injuries to his right hand, the full extent of which are still being evaluated.”

“As of 09:00 local time today, Peter is aware of what is happening and is able to communicate a little, although he is still under strong medication.”

She added that doctors were deciding on the “future course of treatment” for her husband, the BBC reports.

The Tobago House of Assembly said in a statement that a bull shark estimated to be eight to 10 ft (2.4m to 3m) long and 2ft (60cm) wide was responsible for the attack.

Wife thanks those who ‘battled the shark’

Orion Jakerov, a water sports manager at a nearby hotel, witnessed the attack and said people went into the water to “physically fight off the shark.”

He told the local broadcaster TTT Live: “I don’t think they saw it. They were about waist height in the water so they weren’t out of their depth.

“I think their backs were turned and they were just kind of lounging around. Nobody saw the shark coming.”

Mrs Smith expressed her gratitude to “all those that assisted at the scene, and especially the two friends that remained in the water to battle the shark”, along with thanking “the wonderfully kind people of Tobago for all their help and support”.

The Tobago House of Assembly’s Chief Secretary, Farley Augustine, said on Saturday that Mr Smith had had some fingers reattached, but still had “significant wounds” to one of his legs and would require “extensive work”.

Following the attack, a $10,000 (£8,010) bounty had been offered to anyone who could capture the shark and move it away from the beaches. However, this has since been retracted.

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Shark attack