Shark attack: Victim laughed off that killer was at large
Published 18/08/2011 | 13:16
Ian Redmond had laughed off suggestions that killer sharks were at large in the waters off the Seychelles just days before he was savaged to death while swimming, his widow has disclosed.
Gemma Redmond said her husband had teased her when she asked a hotel receptionist whether sharks posed a danger, and had been assured that there were no sharks in the island waters.
Mrs Redmond, 27, gave her first interview since her husband’s death on Tuesday as controversy continued over why the islands’ authorities had not closed the beaches following another fatal shark attack days earlier.
She told the BBC: “Ian had laughed at me when we were on Denis Island, I overheard a man teasing his wife saying there’s sharks and things, and I asked the lady on reception and she said ‘No, not in the Seychelles, the Seychelles are very safe waters.
“One of the reasons that we picked to come to the Seychelles was the beautiful waters, the fact that it’s like an underwater aquarium and there’s not really any dangerous animals.
“I’ve heard of stone fish and you have to be aware of currents when you’re snorkelling but we didn’t really think that sharks would be in the Seychelles at all.
“It wasn’t something we were aware of.”
Other holidaymakers have claimed the government in the island nation played down the death of a French swimmer on Aug 1 to protect the all-important tourist industry.
The official response to the earlier death, which was barely mentioned by the state-controlled media, has been likened to the plot of the film Jaws, in which the mayor of a coastal resort refuses to close the beaches despite warnings of a killer shark on the loose.
Mrs Redmond, who had married her husband on Aug 6, is now preparing to fly his body home once a post mortem examination has been carried out.