Teenager Survives Shark Attack In Florida

Florida — A teenage girl was hospitalized with serious injuries after a shark attacked in her shallow waters off Florida’s Keaton Beach on Thursday, authorities said.

The 17-year-old girl was scalloping in the water, around five feet deep, near Grassy Island, when a 9-foot shark locked its jaws around her thigh, according to Taylor County Sheriff’s Office news release, the Associated Press News reported.

The teenager tried to loosen herself from the shark’s grip by poking it in the eye, before her brother, a firefighter, punched it and managed to fight off the shark. Rhett Willingham, the girl’s brother, was quick to respond and pulled his sister onto a stranger’s boat. To limit blood loss, he applied a tourniquet onto his sister’s leg.

After she was brought to shore, the girl was taken to a hospital in Tallahassee, the state capital, roughly 60 miles from the coast. Doctors informed the family that the girl’s limb had been severely damaged.

According to Shane Bethea, the girl’s father, she was tranquilized until Friday morning, when she regained consciousness. He said she joked about having the shark beaten up when she regains consciousness. She reportedly also requested a frosted dairy dessert after doctors removed her breathing tubes, The Guardian reported. “She She’s been through more than I could ever imagine, but she she is being a trooper,” Bethea said in a Facebook post. “Please pray for her dela and the difficulty of her dela days ahead of her.” He added, “ela She is n’t out of the woods by any stretch, but ela she is alive and that’s what’s most important to us.”

The girl recounted the attack on ABC News, and said that she intended to punch the shark’s nose, recalling what she saw on Animal Planet.

While shark attacks are rare, out of 73 shark attack cases recorded in the world last year, 28 were in Florida, representing 60% of shark attack cases in the US and 38% worldwide.

Deputies urged the public to stay safe, avoid swimming alone and erratic movements in the water.


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Photo: Credit: Pixabay / MankaSeptember

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