Using data from the Florida Museum of Natural History's International Shark Attack File (ISAF) and the Global Shark Attack File, the site notes only six shark attacks in the US were "confirmed fatal" over the last 10 years. There were 443 non-fatal shark attacks with the majority of victims encountering a shark while swimming at a beach or surfing. That's an average of about 45 shark attacks per year in the US.
The vast majority of those attacks took place in Florida and Hawaii. Per the ISAF, these are the states with the most attacks over the last 10 years. (ISAF representatives tell Thrillist the discrepancy between state numbers and the nationwide total is because it has omitted states with only one attack over the last 11 years.)
1. Florida: 244
2. Hawaii: 65
3. South Carolina: 39
4. California: 33
5. North Carolina: 33
6. Texas: 11
7. Oregon: 6
8. Georgia: 4
9. Alabama: 3
Each shark attack tends to make the news, creating the impression that these kind of incidents are common, but the numbers aren't all that big considering the large time frame, as well as the fact that 2015 was a record year for unprovoked shark attacks.
The ISAF highlights how fear of sharks is ridiculous by contextualizing your odds of being killed by a shark. You're twice as likely to be killed by an alligator, seventy-five times more likely to be struck by lightning, and you're even more likely to be killed by sand, somehow.
Maybe now you can bring a little less fear to your Shark Week viewing party.
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