The 10 Most Dangerous Places in America for Shark Attacks

Shark attacks, though rare, are a significant concern in certain areas of the United States. Based on data from the International Shark Attack File and additional sources, here are the top ten most dangerous locations for shark attacks in America:

  1. Florida: Florida leads the nation in shark attacks, with 259 incidents reported from 2012 to 2021, none of which were fatal. The state’s extensive coastline and popular beaches contribute to these high numbers​​.
  2. Hawaii: Hawaii has recorded 76 shark attacks in the same period, with 3 of them being fatal. The state’s tropical waters and tourist-dense beaches make it a notable location for shark encounters​​.
  3. South Carolina: This state has seen a total of 45 shark attacks from 2012 to 2021. The coastal areas, especially popular tourist spots, are frequent sites for these incidents​​.
  4. California: California reported 29 shark bites in the last decade, with 3 fatalities. The state’s Pacific coastline, home to various marine ecosystems, is a common area for shark interactions​​.
  5. North Carolina: With 31 recorded shark attacks and no fatalities from 2012 to 2021, North Carolina’s beaches are also known for shark activity. The state’s warm waters and beach tourism contribute to these statistics​​.
  6. Texas: Texas, despite its vast coastline, has had a relatively low number of shark attacks, totaling 7 from 2012 to 2021, with no fatalities reported​​.

In addition to these state-wide statistics, specific beaches have been identified as particularly dangerous for shark attacks:

  1. New Smyrna Beach, Florida: With 32 shark attacks, this beach is not only the most dangerous in Florida but in the entire United States. The probability of shark attacks here is significantly higher than elsewhere in the country​​.
  2. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: Reporting 9 shark attacks, Myrtle Beach is a popular tourist destination that also poses a higher risk for shark encounters​​.
  3. Cocoa Beach, Florida: With 7 shark attacks, Cocoa Beach is another Florida location known for its shark activity, likely due to the high number of tourists and water sports enthusiasts​​.
  4. Melbourne Beach, Florida: This beach has experienced 6 shark attacks. Like other Florida beaches, its popularity with tourists and surfers makes it a hotspot for shark incidents​​.

Other notable locations include Ormond Beach, Florida (4 attacks), Gulf Shores, Alabama (3 attacks), Isle of Palms, South Carolina (3 attacks), Jacksonville Beach, Florida (3 attacks), Jensen Beach, Florida (3 attacks), and Kauai, Hawaii (3 attacks)​​.


These locations, particularly in states like Florida, Hawaii, and South Carolina, have higher incidences of shark attacks. While shark attacks are rare compared to the number of people enjoying the waters, awareness and caution are essential for safety. Visitors to these areas should be mindful of their surroundings and follow local guidelines to minimize risks.