Shark Attack Less Likely Than Lightning

COLLEGE STATION, Texas, Aug. 30 (UPI) — Shark attacks, though they catch the public’s attention, are rare and less likely than being hit and killed by lightning, experts say.

A Texas A&M University researcher says from 1959 to 2008, 1,930 people in the United States were killed by lightning, while only 25 died in shark attacks, a university release said Monday.

The National Weather Service says the odds of being struck by lightning in a given year is 750,000 to 1.

The International Shark Attack File, maintained by the Florida Museum of Natural History, says there have been 26 shark attacks in the United States this year, with only one fatality. The shark attack monitors compute the odds of getting killed in a shark attack are 1 in 264 million.

The drive to the beach is far more dangerous than any shark encounter, Texas A&M marine expert Andre Landry says.

“You really don’t have to worry very much about sharks when you’re at the beach,” Landry said.

“When you consider all of the people in the world who are in the water at any given moment, the number of shark attacks is really a very, very small number.”

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