Story by the Associated Press; curated by Dave Urbanski
MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. (AP) — A 7-foot-long great white shark bit a man Saturday swimming off of Southern California's Manhattan Beach, officials said.
Two men carry a swimmer, second from right, after he was bitten by a great white shark, as lifeguards close in at left in the ocean off Southern California’s Manhattan Beach, Saturday, July 5, 2014. (Image source: AP/goofyfootphotography.com, Laura Joyce)
Rick Flores, a Los Angeles County Fire spokesman, said the victim was bitten on the upper right side about 9:30 a.m., suffering puncture wounds described as moderate injuries. The victim was taken to a hospital conscious and breathing on his own, Flores said.
KTLA-TV aired cellphone video reportedly of the attack via Loudlabs. (Content warning: Audio includes a screaming individual that may be the bitten swimmer as well as rough language by onlookers who try to direct other swimmers to safety):
The onlookers behind the cellphone video camera can be heard yelling, "Hey! Get out the water! Shark!"
The attack started when a person fishing off the Manhattan Beach Pier hooked the shark and spent over 30 minutes trying to reel it in, which Flores said, made the shark grow agitated.
The victim was in a group of long-distance swimmers about 300 yards off the beach, where Flores said the shark bit the man.
The fisherman cut the line and a surfer put the injured swimmer on his board, taking the victim ashore with the help of Los Angeles County lifeguards.
Individual waves paddle in apparent signal for help. (Image source: KTLA-TV)
“There was blood everywhere and I realized that something had gotten him,” surfer Casey Fenwick told The New York Daily News in a phone call. “He was screaming the whole time and I understand why.”
Paramedics treated the man, whose identity was not released — but Flores described him as middle-aged.
The shark remained in the area for the next 20 minutes and then disappeared into the murky water, Flores said.
The beaches remained open, but a mile-long stretch was temporarily off limits to swimmers, Flores said, as lifeguards patrolled in boats to make sure the water was clear.
This story has been updated.