Feeds

R.I.P. Steve Irwin

Crocodile Hunter dies in freak stingray incident

Business security measures using SSL

Register readers and hacks were this morning digesting the tragic news of the death of colourful Aussie wildlife presenter Steve Irwin following a stingray attack.

Vulture Central's favourite daredevil reptile-botherer and conservationist was filming a documentary off the Queensland coast.

Authorities said he received a barb to the chest at about 11 am local time on Batt Reef, off Port Douglas. Crew called for treatment from an air ambulance, but Irwin was already dead aboard research vessel Croc One when it arrived.

Irwin's producer John Stainton said: "He came over the top of the stingray and the barb went up into his chest and put a hole in his heart."

Attending physician Dr Ed Loughlin confirmed nothing could be done to save Irwin. He said: "It became clear fairly soon that he had non-survivable injuries. He had a penetrating injury to the left front of his chest. He had lost his pulse and wasn't breathing."

Fellow documentary maker Ben Cropp said he had spoken to Irwin's cameraman. He told news.com.au: "In this case he [Irwin] was swimming alongside a bull ray, a big black ray and the cameraman would have been in front, filming him. Steve got probably maybe a bit too close to the ray, and with the cameraman in front, the ray must have felt sort of cornered. It baulked but didn't spook and go racing away, which would have been fine.

"It went into a defensive mode, stopped, turned around and lashed out with its tail which has a considerable spike on it. Unfortunately, Steve was directly in its path and he took a fatal wound."

There are more than 400 species of stingray. Their barbs can be over a foot long and carry a paralysing toxin. Despite this, deaths are very rare, as most are sustained to the legs or feet when stingrays are trodden on in the shallows.

Tributes to Irwin and his work have been quick to come. PM John Howard said: "I am quite shocked and distressed at Steve Irwin's sudden, untimely and freakish death. He was a wonderful character. He was a passionate environmentalist. He brought joy and entertainment and excitement to millions of people."

"I really do feel Australia has lost a wonderful and colourful son," he added.

Stainton said he had always feared their 20 year relationship would end in tragedy. He said: "Nothing would ever scare Steve or would worry him. He didn't have a fear of death at all."

Irwin leaves a wife and two children. ®

Bootnote

The Courier Mail reports editing of Irwin's Wikipedia entry had to be suspended after someone left the typically considered tribute: "Steve Irwin's dead! LOLOLOLOLOL!" Classy.

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Bacon-related medical breakthrough wins Ig Nobel prize
Is there ANYTHING cured pork can't do?
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.