Man attacked by shark off Esperance

DEPARTMENT of Fisheries Shark Response Unit manager Lisa Clack says no white shark has been caught yet in response to the shark that attacked Greg Pickering in the Cape Arid region yesterday.

Ms Clack said fisheries officers removed the capture gear from the water at sunset last night, and have remained on-site overnight so the operation can continue today from first light.

She said the capture gear was reset at sunrise this morning and will remain in the water until the shark is caught, or the catch and destroy order is rescinded by the Director General of the Department of Fisheries.

Greg Pickering is out of surgery and in a stable condition at Royal Perth Hospital after being attacked by a shark yesterday morning. 

Mr Pickering was attacked by a shark at Poison Creek, 180km east of Esperance.

Southern Wild Abalone general manager Marcus Tromp said Mr Pickering works for his company.

Mr Tromp said he did not want to comment on the ‘catch to kill’ order made by the Department of Fisheries.

“It is the Fisheries’ decision,” he said.

He said Mr Pickering was in theatre all night receiving surgery to head, face and upper torso injuries and that he was recovering this morning.

“This morning he was conscious and talking,” he said.

Mr Tromp said Mr Pickering is very fit and healthy and has a deep love of the ocean.

“He lives in the ocean and has a great love for it and for the ocean life,” he said.

Mr Pickering has been living in Esperance for almost two years with his wife and two daughters. 

Mr Tromp said another abalone boat attended to the man and administered first aid before they returned to shore where St John Ambulance arrived. 

An ambulance crew from Condingup attended to the man at the scene.

Mr Pickering arrived at Esperance Hospital about 2pm. 

The exact location of the incident is not known. 

A Department of Fisheries spokesperson said they will not know the location until emergency response officers and other witnesses that were on the vessel return to Esperance and are able to provide the information to authorities.

Mr Tromp said divers work about five miles off shore. 

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