A shark has killed a 55-year-old man in Western Australia after biting his upper thigh and hand.

The attack takes Australia's shark attack deaths up to eight this year, edging close to the all-time record of nine in 1929.

Police were called to the popular tourist spot of Cable Beach, on the coastline with the Indian Ocean, at about 8.40am on Sunday local time.

Despite the best efforts from police and then paramedics, the man died from his injuries at the scene having been pulled ashore onto the beach.

According to local media reports, the man was bitten on the upper thigh and hand but it is unknown what species of shark inflicted the devastating wounds.

The beach was immediately closed by park rangers and a fishing vessel was deployed to patrol the area.

October 9 was the recent shark attack before Sunday's fatality.

A surfer was dragged from his board by a shark, according to his companions on Esperance, Western Australia.

A a three-day search failed to locate anything more than his surfboard and parts of his wetsuit.

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