2015 sets record for most shark attacks, with 98 worldwide

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Experts say 2015 saw a record-setting 98 unprovoked shark attacks worldwide, including 30 in Florida alone.

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The Florida Museum of Natural History released the numbers Monday. Scientists say the previous record was 88 attacks in 2000.

International Shark Attack File curator George Burgess says attacks are expected to continue to increase as human populations grow and shark populations recover.

The U.S. led the world with 59 attacks, including eight in North Carolina, a pair of which happened to a boy and girl about just 90 minutes apart in mid-June in the surf of Oak Island.

Other NC shark attacks this past Summer included an 8-year-old boy bitten at Surf City.  A Marine was also attacked by a shark on July 4 in the waters of Surf City.

Two shark attacks also happened on the NC Outer Banks, with one happening to a dad on July 1 at Ocracoke Island and another at Waves, when a teen was bitten near the end of June.

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Eight more attacks happened in South Carolina with seven happening in Hawaii.

California and Texas each had two attacks, and New York and Mississippi each had one.

Australia and South Africa followed the U.S. with 18 and 8 attacks, respectively.

Of the six fatalities last year, two happened off the Indian Ocean island of Reunion; the others occurred off Australia, Egypt, New Caledonia and the United States.

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