The victim, whose identity is being withheld pending notification of her family, was swimming off the shore of Bailey Island, an island in Casco Bay, when she was injured, a witness told the Maine Marine Patrol. The witness added that it appeared to be a shark attack.
“Kayakers nearby brought her to shore and EMS responders were called to the scene where she was pronounced deceased,” the statement said.
Shark attacks are rare for the state of Maine. The International Shark Attack File, a global database of shark attacks, only listed one unprovoked shack attack in the state. That happened in 2010, according to CNN news partner CBC, when a commercial diver working in the Bay of Fundy was attacked by a porbeagle shark. The diver was uninjured and captured the incident on video. Officials believe the shark thought the diver’s camera was food, according to CBC.
The Maine Marine Patrol is currently investigating the death and no other information was made available. Swimmers and boaters are urged to use caution in the area and to avoid swimming near schooling fish or seals, the Maine Department of Marine Resources said.