Shark attack near Margaret River Pro

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THERE are reports of a second shark attack just kilometres away from where a surfer was bitten on the leg in Gracetown this morning.

The man was reportedly bitten while surfing at Gracetown, where the Margaret River Pro is held.

He was treated on the beach by paramedics before he was flown by helicopter 250 kilometers (160 miles) to a hospital in the city of Perth, Bertoldo said.

Surf Life Saving Western Australia confirmed the shark sighting after receiving a report from the public.

Once news filtered through, the WSL put the event on hold for about an hour.

"We are placing the Margaret River Pro on hold while we work with local authorities on next steps".

Organisers chose to resume the competition about an hour later with "enhanced safety measures" after discussions with local authorities and surfers.

"(I) saw the guy who had been attacked get separated from the board and then start to paddle for an inside wave, which he managed to body surf all the way in", witness Peter Jovic told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

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"If anyone is familiar with the Mick Fanning moment at Jeffreys Bay a couple of years ago, it was very similar to that, where a shark pretty much popped up and ended up knocking a surfer off his board", Mr Jovic told ABC radio. "We have mitigation protocols in place and will be enhancing those when competition resumes", the WSL's organisers tweeted.

'There was a lot more thrashing around.

We have been alerted of a shark incident that occurred near Gracetown. "After that it was hard to see what was going on". The safety of our surfers & staff is a top priority.

Friends used the rope from the victim's board as a tourniquet and gave him first aid until emergency crews arrived from Margaret River within six minutes, AAP reported.

"It was a large shark and from the way it was behaving, it would have been a white pointer".

The surfer suffered signficant leg injuries and was flown to Royal Perth Hospital (RPH), where he is recovering from surgery and is expected to be transferred to the trauma unit.

A surfer was killed by a shark at Gracetown in 2013.