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Selfies have killed more than sharks in 2015
With their speed, aggression and razor sharp teeth, it’s no surprise that sharks are one of the most feared creatures of the sea. But meanwhile –on land – an even greater threat lives among us almost unnoticed – selfies.
As reported by Mashable, eight people have died from shark attacks in 2015, but, staggeringly, 12 have been killed in selfie-related accidents.
The grim statistic is difficult to get your head around, especially when you learn just four were from fatal trips and falls. The others include three Indian students killed taking selfies on a train track, and two Russian men killed posing with a hand grenade. Details of all 12 selfie-related deaths are listed on Wikipedia.
The danger has become such a concern in Russia that the country’s police launched a campaign earlier this year to promote selfie safety, including a brochure that advises on the possible threats.
“When a person is trying to take a picture of himself – he has scattered attention, he loses his balance, he does not look around and did not feel in danger. If you take a selfie, make sure that you are in a safe place and your life is not in danger!” the website reads.
That doesn’t make sharks any less dangerous, of course, but in the grand scheme of things it’s human beings that pose the biggest threat to human beings.
Florida Museum of Natural History’s George Burgess goes one step further, claiming that sharks that should be scared of humans as well.
“The fact of the matter is we’re killing between 30 and 70 million sharks a year in fisheries,” Burgess told the Huffington Post. “The real aggressor in this relationship isn’t the shark, it’s the human.”
When it comes to sharks and selfies, then, perspective is everything – but should you ever encounter a shark, please (please!) ditch the selfie stick and swim to safety.