Shark Kills Swimmer in Horror Attack: '[It] Was Chomping at the Body'

Human remains have been found after a horrific shark attack in New South Wales, Australia, with a witness saying the animal was "chomping at the body" and that there was "blood everywhere."

A shark has killed a swimmer in a horrific attack in New South Wales, Australia, New South Wales police have said.

New South Wales Police said emergency services were called to Buchan Point, near Little Bay which lies to Sydney's South east following reports of a shark attack at At 4.35 p.m. local time on February 16.

A statement from New South Wales police at 6.00 p.m. confirmed that human remains had been found in the water. The Little Bay beach has been closed off as officers continue to search the area.

One witness, Kris Linto, told 9News: "Some guy was swimming and a shark came and attacked him vertically. We heard a yell and turned around it looked like a car had landed in the water, a big splash then the shark was chomping at the body and there was blood everywhere."

Another witness, who was not named, had been fishing in the area at the time of the incident. He said he saw a swimmer wearing a wetsuit being dragged under the water by a large shark, ABC News reported.

"When he went down there were so many splashes," he told the broadcaster. "It was terrible, I am shaking. I keep vomiting, it's very upsetting."

The attack lasted several seconds.

A NSW Ambulance spokeswoman told The Sydney Morning Herald: "Unfortunately this person had suffered catastrophic injuries and there wasn't a lot paramedics could do when we arrived."

No further information is available at this time.

In a statement emailed to Newsweek, New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (DPI) said it was working with police and Surf Life Saving to monitor the area and provide resources, including the deployment of drumlines in the area. "DPI extends sincere condolences to the family and friends and first responders at this tragic time," it said.

Waters in New South Wales are teeming with sharks this time of year. Bull sharks in particular prefer shallow coastal waters around Sydney as they are attracted by the warm temperatures during summer and autumn. Once the water cools down in the winter, they usually leave the harbor and migrate north.

New South Wales police said it will be liaising with the Department of Primary Industry to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of the swimmer. They said that a report will also be prepared for the Coroner.

When it comes to shark attack fatalities, Australia is the deadliest location in the world. More than 700 unprovoked shark attacks recorded since 1900, resulting in more than 170 fatalities. There have been hundreds more severely injured.

However, this is the first fatality from a shark attack in Sydney since 1963.

According to Australia First Aid, it is currently a "peak time" for shark attacks. They typically occur in the summer between November and April, when people tend to swim more, and there are more sharks in and around the beaches.

This article has been updated to include a statement from the DPI.

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Stock image of sharks. Human remains have been found off the coast of Sydney, Australia, after a shark attack. Getty Images