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Man critically injured by shark on Great Barrier Reef

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Glenn Dickson, 25, was spear fishing near Port Hinchinbrook when the shark attacked.

He was flown by helicopter in a critical condition 90 miles north to the Cairns Base Hospital, she said.

'He is an fantastic person, it is awful news I can't believe it, ' Mr Ballantyne told Daily Mail Australia.

The Concord Register reported that Dickson's friends rushed him to the mainland town of Cardwell, which was 30 kms away.

Initial reports from the Cairns Post said Mr Dickson was attacked the moment he hit the water - after jumping from a rock near a boat ramp.

Mr Ballantyne will be flying to be by his friend's side tomorrow - and to help support his friend's partner Jessie Janssen.

According to the Associated Press, a 55-year-old man was also severely injured in a similar incident that took place near the Great Barrier Reef in January.

A rescue helicopter arrived on scene just before midday and it is understood the victim had lost a significant amount of blood, with the worst of the injuries limited to just one leg.

He suffered massive wounds to his right leg and was bleeding heavily when his friends dragged him into the boat, where they tied a tourniquet around his thigh to slow the bleeding.

The attack was reportedly seen by nearby swimmers.

Experts say shark attacks are increasing as water sports become more popular and bait fish move closer to shore, but fatalities remain rare.

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