POSTED: Monday, October 24, 2011 - 3:42pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 - 10:48am
An American diver was killed off the coast of Sydney, Australia over the weekend in an apparent shark attack. This is the third attack in Australia this year in the same area and now officials are on the hunt for a killer shark.
After the third fatal shark attack off Western Australia in a matter of weeks, the state's premier has ordered fisheries officers to hunt and kill a rogue "great white."
"There will be a helicopter in the air on Perth beaches as of tomorrow, that will be a temporary arrangement until surf lifesaving helicopter arrives," says Colin Barnett.
This shark, seen in the area shortly after the attack, could be the very one that killed Thomas Wainwright. The 32-year-old man had come to Australia from Texas to work in ocean engineering. Wainwright originally hailed from the Florida panhandle, and his sisters say he was a man with a passion for life, and for the ocean, who also adored Australia.
"The day before, he sent us an email about coming to Australia for Christmas," says Wanda Brandon, Wainwright’s sister.
On Saturday, Wainwright and two American friends had taken a boat to a picturesque island just off shore from the city of Perth. He was scuba diving when the shark struck. Some here in Western Australia fear there could be one devastating predator responsible for this deadly attack and the two others, but scientists say it is more likely there were three separate sharks, all trailing the whales now migrating through the area.
Authorities say they're doing whatever they can to prevent another attack like this one.