Man killed in first fatal shark attack to rock Byron Bay in 21 years

SHark - 7 News Brisbane

FATAL ATTACK: News helicopters film massive shark stalking the shallows at the scene after the attack. PICTURE: 7 News Brisbane (Twitter)

UPDATE: BEACHES will remain closed at Byron Bay this morning while Marine Parks Officers and Lifesavers check the water.

Paul Wilcox, 50, died yesterday after he was attacked by a shark at Clarkes Beach around 10:40am.


There is speculation whether his wetsuit and flippers made him more of a target.

The Byron Bay Mayor Simon Richardson has joined calls for year-round lifesaver patrols in light of the fatal shark attack.

EARLIER: It’s understood a tourist, Mark Hickey, first noticed a shark about two metres in length circling a dark figure in the surf at Clarkes Beach shortly after 10.30 on Tuesday morning.

After closer inspection, he realised that it was the bloodied body of a man in which the shark was circling.

Using his surf-ski, he then pulled the man’s body to shore where CPR was performed for around 20 minutes but to no avail.

The man was pronounced dead on paramedics arrival.

Shark Attack - Matthew Howard

EMOTIONAL SCENES: Man in his 40s, believed to be a Byron local, killed in fatal shark attack at Clarkes Beach PICTURE: Matthew Howard (Twitter)

It’s the first fatal shark attack to rock the Byron community in 21 years.

All beaches between Belongil and Tallow Beach have since been closed for at least 24 hours, with lifeguards stationed at Main Beach to ensure people stay out of the water.

It’s believed they will remain closed until at least Wednesday afternoon.

A large media pack has converged onto the beach were police are expected to give an update at 1.30pm.

EARLIER: A MAN has died in a suspected shark attack at Byron Bay this morning.

Police and paramedics were called to Main Beach around 10:45am this morning after a number of calls.

The man, believed to be aged in his 40s, was in the water when he was bitten on the right leg.

He was seen floating in shallow water, close to the shore line, and dragged onto the beach.

An ambulance was called and he was pronounced dead a short time later.

Police are currently speaking to a number of people on the beach in order to figure out his identity and what he was doing in the water at the time of the incident.

A report is being prepared for the Coroner.

We’ll have more information as it comes to hand.