How Likely Is It You’ll Be Attacked by a Shark?

How likely is it you'll be chomped on by one of these guys? (Image: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain)
How likely is it you'll be chomped on by one of these guys? (Image: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain)

Between 1959 and 2010, there were 974 shark attacks, and 26 people died from these attacks.

During the same time period, lightning strikes killed 1,970 people. More Americans were shot by a gun strapped to their own pants last year than have been killed by sharks in the last three years combined, reported Bloomberg.


Worldwide shark attacks between 2004 and 2013. (Image: Florida Museum of Natural History)

To put this into perspective, 655,000 people are killed annually by mosquitoes. In the U.S., running into a deer with a vehicle kills 130 people each year, while 22 people die in cow-related incidents.

While only 13 people died from shark attacks in the U.S. in 1996, 43,000 Americans were injured on toilets, and air freshener incidents injured 2,600 people, according to National Geographic.

How likely are you to be attacked by a shark?

An average of 3,880 people died each year in the mid-2000s from drowning, while approximately 3.5 million people a year will become ill after visiting beaches polluted by sanitation overflow, says The Environmental Protection Agency. In Chesapeake Bay, about 500,000 people get stung by jellyfish every year, along with 200,000 on the coast of Florida, according to the National Science Foundation.

So when you look at the bigger picture, there really is not much to fear.

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