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Steve Irwin news devours bandwidth

Croc hunter's death brings down web

News of Australian crocodile hunter Steve Irwin's death had website traffic in overdrive today, with many news sites operating on low-bandwidth mode as a result of high traffic.

The spike spread across a number of news sites as internet users were unsure if the sad news was a possible hoax.

Many news outlets ran unconfirmed reports that the 44-year-old television personality and environmentalist died in a marine accident in North Queensland when stung on the chest by a stingray.

AAP (Australian Associated Press) said the news was official, and based on unnamed police sources.

Irwin was famous for his catchphrase 'crikey!'. AAP said his American-born wife, Terri, who is trekking on Cradle Mountain in Tasmania, was unaware of the news.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation today had this notice on its site: "Abc.net.au is experiencing higher than normal traffic. You are currently viewing a low bandwidth page. The normal homepage will return when traffic is back to normal."


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