Woman Eaten By Shark?

In Hawaii, authorities have called off a search for a missing woman after she was reported to have encountered a shark.

A 60-year-old woman and her husband were snorkeling off Keawakapu Beach, Maui, when she was last seen about 75 yards away.

Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources spokesman Dan Dennison said the missing woman’s husband called 911 about noon to report the incident. He said he tried looking for his wife before returning to shore but could not find her.

Reports suggest the man tried fighting off the shark, but Dennison wouldn’t comment on them.

Several items from her bathing suit as well as a snorkel set were found on the beach, according to reports.

In addition to an extensive in-water search, Maui Fire Department and Maui Ocean Safety personnel have conducted an aerial search assisted by Maui Fire’s Air 1 helicopter.

“Some people provided witness accounts, but there haven’t been any reports of sharks in the water since the possible time of the incident,” Dennison told a news conference Thursday.

There was no information available about the shark involved in the encounter, according to Dennison.

After failing to locate her, authorities called off the search on Friday afternoon.

Mauna Kai condo buildings to Ulua Point have been placed with shark warning signs, which will remain up until noon on Friday.

In most cases, DLNR does not release information about shark-human encounters until all relevant facts have been determined. In this case, Dennison said the possible encounter caused them to set aside normal operating procedures. Dennison could not provide any information about the people involved in the incident.

During certain months, in particular October through December, the Division of Aquatic Resources reports an increased risk of shark bites. Although fewer people are in the water during November to December, some of Hawaii’s most serious shark attacks took place during these months.

In Honolua Bay, about 20 yards from shore, a 56-year-old surfer suffered severe lacerations on his left leg from a 14-foot tiger shark on Dec. 8, 2020.