In my opinion one of the good things about living in Australia is that it has managed to retain/protect some of its wildlife, both land and sea based. Most of Europe seems to have wiped out most of their wildlife, especially dangerous ones, centuries ago.
So it always amazes me that every shark attack that occurs here makes the headlines without fail. I have to assume that its due to the rarity of the event rather than to the event itself.
If you look at the number of car accidents that occur in Australia compared to the number of shark attacks, you can see that the most dangerous threat to us humans is other humans. Deaths from cars roughly runs at 3 people per day throughout Australia, where as there have been less than 15 deaths from shark attacks in the last 50 years. It seems we just have an ability to ignore our own attacks and are horrified that another animal might be able to injure/kill us.
The worst part of this is that when you are a child you are taught that cars are dangerous and to take care crossing the road, the highway code is instilled to you at a young age. However, the simple rules of avoiding shark attacks does not seemed to be taught with the same enthusiasm. The advice is ignored or not taught and the attacks do occur, and most of them seem that they could have been avoided, the same with crossing the road or when driving a car.
I myself cannot see the difference between a car injuring a human and a shark injuring a human. In both cases, both can inflict serious injuries and emotional response from friends and family. But I can guarantee that the shark attack will make the TV.
There have been calls to increase the cull of sharks in Australia, this is understandable. What we have to remember is that Australia has quite a good record with shark conservation, but it can still do better. Culling the sharks does not seem to be the best idea, learning to avoid the days/events when shark attacks are likely to occur is the way forward, regardless of how good the surf is, it’s not worth your leg or your arm or your life!