A woman was bitten “to the bone” in a shark attack, off Cocoa Beach in Florida, near Cape Canaveral. The incident took place on Sunday afternoon, at approximately 3 p.m. ET.
Jill Kruse, a 28-year old tourist from Colorado, had wanted to bathe in the Atlantic Ocean. As she was standing waist-deep in the water, a shark which had wandered near the shore bit her ankle.
That’s when the woman called for help, desperately yelling “It got me”. Fellow beach-goer Holly Petersen saw the shark fin emerge from the water and immediately came to the rescue, taking the victim by the hand, and safely dragging her back to the shore.
According to witnesses, the leg injury sustained by the severely bitten woman measured around 6 to 7 inches, and the wound was profound, reaching the bone.
Luckily there were no life-threatening injuries, and lifeguards from Brevard County Ocean Rescue promptly provided emergency assistance.
Shortly afterwards, paramedics arrived at the scene, and Kruse was transported to the Holmes Regional Medical Center, located in Melbourne, in order to receive further medical care.
The woman had some stitches and is expected to make a full recovery, as her mother Wanda has said, but leg surgery might be in the cards to repair the damage caused by the vicious attack.
As Brevard County Ocean Rescue Chief Jeff Scabarozi has explained, no sharks had been observed in the area recently. However, it may be that the predators were following large schools of bait fish, which had been identified swimming approximately one mile away from the beach.
It’s unclear exactly what type of shark attacked the woman, some of the speculations stating that it may have been a spinner, a blacktip or a bull shark.
Lifeguards completed 11 rescues that day along the Brevard County coast, which is a much higher number than usual, since the area isn’t normally swarming with tourists.
A possible explanation for the higher number recorded on Sunday could be the fact that the swell of the ocean didn’t seem as menacing as it normally is, and more swimmers felt confident enough to venture into the water.
This new encounter with a finned predator follows another attack which took place on Wednesday, at Makaha Beach Park, in Oahu, Hawaii.
A 10-year old boy was bitten that day, and researchers have said that the number of such incidents in the region has doubled in the last 10 years, probably because more tourists have been bathing in the ocean, thus making chance meetings with sharks more likely.
Last year, a total of 52 unprovoked shark attacks took place in the United States, more than in any other country. 54% of these incidents took place in Florida, with the most perilous area being Volusia County, situated north of Cocoa Beach, where a total of 10 victims have been reported.
Throughout the world, people were viciously ambushed by sharks on 72 occasions in 2014, and three of the victims eventually succumbed to their wounds.
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