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‘It was like Jaws’: British boy, eight, injured in shark attack in the Bahamas

An eight-year-old British boy needed a three-hour operation after he was attacked by sharks in the Bahamas.

Finley Downer suffered flesh wounds after being bitten on both legs and had to be taken to a local health clinic on a golf buggy.

He was pulled to safety after he was reportedly attacked by around three nurse sharks while swimming in a lagoon last week.

Finley was later taken to the capital Nassau for an operation and for further treatment to his injuries.

The family has now returned home to Kettering, Northamptonshire, where Finley is recovering and using a wheelchair.

The boy’s father, Michael Downer, 44, told The Sun how Finley “could have been killed” and the attack was “like a scene out of Jaws”.

Mr Downer had taken Finley and his two other children, Lily, nine, and Emily, 12, on a luxury holiday.

The family had been partly through their five-island tour when the attack took place at Compass Cay.

He said the children had decided to join a crowd of people in a lagoon, in which nurse sharks were swimming.

Mr Downer said he suddenly “heard a terrified scream and saw dozens (of sharks) circling Finley”.

He added: “There was so much blood. Bits of his leg were hanging off.

“He kept saying, ‘Dad I don’t want to die. Dad, I don’t want to go to heaven’.”

Finley was pulled from the water by his older sister Lily, and Mr Downer had to spend £2,000 on flights to Nassau for the emergency operation.

Read more on Sky News:

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In an interview with The Sun, Mr Downer expressed his anger at being told by tour guides the sharks were safe.

Operator Exuma Escapes claimed in a statement to the newspaper that the family went unguided into a lagoon which it does not use on its tour – adding that nurse sharks are docile bottom-feeders unless they are handled incorrectly.

Experts say nurse sharks are mostly seen as harmless to humans unless they are abruptly disturbed or stepped on – and many will also swim away when approached.

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