Shark attacks diver off Australia’s west coast

SYDNEY (AP) — A diver was injured Tuesday in a shark attack off a remote section of Australia’s southwest coast, officials said.

The 55-year-old man was diving for abalone when he was attacked near an area called Poison Creek, near the southwest city of Esperance, Western Australia state police spokesman Sgt. Gerry Cassidy said.

The man was conscious when paramedics were first called, a spokesman for the St. John Ambulance service said. The victim was taken to a hospital in Esperance for treatment. No information was immediately available on his injuries and his name was not released.

Officials from the state Department of Fisheries were heading to the area on Tuesday with equipment to catch and kill the shark.

Sharks are common in Australian waters, though the nation has averaged just more than one fatal attack per year over the past 50 years.

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