Great white shark kills woman off US coast

By: AFP      Published: 10:17 PM, 28 Jul, 2020
Great white shark kills woman off US coast

A woman was killed by a great white shark in a rare attack off the coast of Maine in the northeast of the United States, authorities said Tuesday.

The 63-year-old was swimming near Bailey Island -- close to the state's biggest city of Portland -- when she was attacked on Monday, according to Maine's marine department.

It is only the second shark attack on record in Maine, where cold waters usually deter swimmers, and the first that was fatal.

Authorities named the victim as Julie Dimperio Holowach, 63, from New York City.

Patrick Keliher, head of the Maine Department of Marine Resources, said Holowach had been wearing a wetsuit. 

Kayakers brought her to shore, where an emergency medical team declared her dead.

A tooth collected at the scene confirmed that she had been attacked by a great white shark, Keliher told reporters.

Sharks have been sighted in various places off the northeast US coast in recent weeks, particularly around Long Island in New York.

Sightings are also common around Cape Cod, in Massachusetts, where a surfer was killed by a great white in September 2018.

Great whites swim to the region to hunt for one of their preferred foods -- seals.