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Boston woman paddleboarding near Bahamas resort killed in shark attack, police say

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A 44-year-old American visiting the Bahamas from Boston was killed in a shark attack while paddleboarding near a beach resort Monday, according to local authorities.

The woman had travelled to the Bahamas with a male relative, the Royal Bahamas Police Force said in a news release.

"Preliminary reports indicate that the victim, along with a male relative, was paddle boarding away from the shoreline in waters at the rear of a resort in western New Providence when she was bitten by a shark," the release said.

A lifeguard at the resort noticed the attack and went into the water on a boat to try and rescue the victim along with the relative.

The lifeguard administered CPR to the woman, police said.

"The victim suffered significant trauma to the right side of her body. She was examined on scene by emergency medical technicians, who concluded that she showed no vital signs of life," the police said in a release.

The woman died shortly after 11 a.m. local time, police told CNN.

Authorities haven't released the woman's identity.

A U.S. State Department spokesperson confirmed to CNN that a U.S. citizen died in the Bahamas on Monday, and said the department offered its condolences to the person's family and was "providing all appropriate consular assistance." The department had no further comment "out of respect to the family's privacy," the spokesperson said.

The incident comes days after a woman was killed in an apparent shark attack at a Mexican resort. The woman was found dead by emergency services at the scene in Melaque Bay in the Cihuatlán municipality.

Shark attacks, particularly fatal ones, are rare: On average, sharks kill five people per year in unprovoked attacks, CNN previously reported. The odds of getting fatally attacked by one of the carnivorous fish are less than 1 in 4 million, according to the International Shark Attack File. Experts attribute many shark bites to cases of mistaken identity, particularly in waters with low visibility.

Despite their rarity, the attacks still happen on occasion. Last year, a cruise ship passenger was killed by a shark while snorkelling in the Bahamas. And in 2019, an American woman was also killed while snorkelling in the Bahamas after three different sharks attacked her.

CNN's Jennifer Hansler contributed to this report.

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