PARIS (TheBlaze/AP) — Authorities on the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean say a teenage girl was killed by a shark as she snorkeled just a few yards from the shore.

While the French island has seen occasional attacks on surfers farther out from shore, attacks on swimmers close to shore are exceedingly rare.

Teen Killed in Shark Attack Close to Reunion Island Shore

Coast guards search for the remains of a 15 year old girl who was attacked and killed by a shark on July 15, 2013 near Saint-Paul’s bay, west of the Reunion Island. The victim was swimming with her 14 year old sister 5 meters from the seacoast. Prior to this attack, victims of sharks in this area were solely surfers. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

The regional administration for Reunion said Tuesday that the attack occurred Monday in a cove with no lifeguard at Saint-Paul, on the northwest side of the island. Reunion is east of Madagascar off the East African coast.

AFP reported Gina Hoarau, the head of public safety in Saint-Paul, saying the body of the 15-year-old was “carried away by the shark,” but crews are conducting a search.

“The conditions of this attack are very surprising. We didn’t think a shark could come so close to the shore,” Hoarau said.

Watch AFP’s report:

In a statement, the administration said the girl lived on the French mainland but was vacationing on Reunion. She was swimming with another girl who was not harmed.

Teen Killed in Shark Attack Close to Reunion Island Shore

French member of parliament and Saint-Paul’s mayor Huguette Bello (R) speaks to journalists on July 15, 2013 during a press conference in Saint-Paul, west of the Reunion Island. A 15 year old girl was attacked and killed by a shark on July 15, 2013 while she was swimming with her 14 year old sister 5 meters from the seacoast. Prior to this attack, victims of sharks in this area were solely surfers. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

St. Paul Mayor Huguette Bello was reported by the French website Linfo (via Google Translate) as sending her condolences to the parents of the teen but also expressing that swimming is prohibited in the bay where the incident happened and calling on all islanders to be cautious.

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