Good ol’ summer! It’s a great time for barbecues, grape Slurpees and trying not to get worried about a projected increase in the number of shark attacks for 2016. Woo! Let’s grab our towels and hit the beach!
Reuters recently spoke with an expert in the field of shark attacks and they sound confident that this summer will see more biting that the last one. Y’know, the sort of thing you like to hear on Memorial Day weekend.
“We should have more bites this year than last,” says George Burgess who serves as director of the International Shark Attack File at the University of Florida. Why the forecasted uptick? (Are these creatures mad that humans have been reckless with our Street Sharks record keeping?) Burgess points to a collection of factors. The human population has increased and rising temperatures are sending more and more people into the water. Mix that with a shark population that has bounced back from record lows two decades back and you’re got a recipe for additional shark attacks.
Before we begin banding together to demand the ocean be filled with concrete so THIS MENACE ENDS HERE, sharks chomping on humans is still a relatively limited occurrence. Last year, 98 shark attacks were reported across the globe with a total of six fatalities. A more reassuring number would be zero fatalities, but it’s still not the top worry you should have the beach. As Reuters notes, “beachgoers face a higher risk of being killed by sand collapsing as the result of over achieving sand castle builders.” So, um, focus your nightmares on that.