Shark attacks are rare, according to Dr. Chris Lowe, director of the California State University Long Beach Shark Lab. He explains that while the research isn’t clear as to why they attack humans at all, statistics suggest that there are two types of attacks: unprovoked and provoked.
Unprovoked attacks generally occur as a result of mistaken identity. In these situations, a shark may bite a person thinking he or she is a seal or similar prey, and will stop and swim away once it realizes what it’s bitten.
Provoked attacks occur when the shark feels threatened and wants you to go away.
Dr. Lowe offers the following tips in case you encounter a shark: