19 Aug 2015

Sharks scare surfers out of Sydney waters

11:53 am on 19 August 2015

A spate of shark attacks in Australia has left some of world's top surfing beaches deserted and many people having second thoughts about taking a swim as the summer approaches.

A Great White Shark attacks in South Australia.

A Great White Shark attacks in South Australia. Photo: AFP

There have been 11 shark attacks in New South Wales alone this year, compared with only three in both 2014 and 2013.

In waters along hundreds of kilometres of coast north of Sydney, helicopter patrols regularly spot Great White sharks close to the few surfers still brave enough to catch the waves.

Shark experts are being deployed to try to stem the attacks under a Shark Smart campaign authorised by the Department of Primary Industries.

As well, some surfers are paying more than $400 for a device imbedded a surf board to repel sharks by emitting an electronic force field that overpowers its sensing organs.