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## How Dangerous is Scuba Diving with Sharks?

Sharks are often portrayed as fearsome predators in movies and TV shows, but the reality is that they are not as dangerous as you might think. In fact, scuba diving with sharks can be a safe and rewarding experience, as long as you take the proper precautions.

### Shark Attack Statistics

The chances of being attacked by a shark while scuba diving are extremely low. According to the International Shark Attack File, there were only 137 unprovoked shark attacks on humans worldwide in 2021. Of these attacks, only 10 were fatal.

The majority of shark attacks occur in warm, tropical waters, and most victims are surfers or swimmers. Scuba divers are less likely to be attacked because they are typically in deeper water and are not splashing around on the surface.

### Factors that Increase the Risk of a Shark Attack

While the chances of being attacked by a shark while scuba diving are low, there are certain factors that can increase the risk, such as:

* **Diving in areas with a high population of sharks.** Some areas, such as the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the waters off South Africa, are known for having large populations of sharks.
* **Diving at night.** Sharks are more active at night, so diving during the day is safer.
* **Diving in murky water.** Sharks can’t see well in murky water, so they may be more likely to mistake you for prey.
* **Diving with chum or bait.** Chumming the water attracts sharks, so it’s best to avoid doing this while scuba diving.
* **Wearing shiny jewelry or clothing.** Sharks are attracted to shiny objects, so it’s best to avoid wearing jewelry or clothing that sparkles.

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### How to Avoid a Shark Attack

There are a few things you can do to avoid a shark attack while scuba diving, such as:

* **Dive with a buddy.** Sharks are less likely to attack a group of people than a single person.
* **Stay calm and avoid splashing around.** Sharks are attracted to movement, so it’s important to stay calm and avoid splashing around excessively.
* **Don’t harass sharks.** Sharks are wild animals, so it’s important to treat them with respect. Don’t try to touch or feed them.
* **If a shark approaches you, stay calm and back away slowly.** Most sharks will not attack unless they feel threatened, so it’s important to avoid making any sudden movements.

### What to Do if You Are Attacked by a Shark

If you are attacked by a shark, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of survival, such as:

* **Fight back.** Sharks are predators, so they will likely try to kill you if you are attacked. Fight back as hard as you can with your fists, feet, or any other objects you can find.
* **Aim for the eyes, gills, or snout.** These are the most vulnerable areas on a shark’s body.
* **Don’t give up.** Even if you are injured, keep fighting until the shark gives up.

### Conclusion

Scuba diving with sharks can be a safe and rewarding experience, as long as you take the proper precautions. By following the tips in this article, you can help reduce your risk of being attacked by a shark.

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