A tourist was bitten by a shark on Long Island on Wednesday — the fifth suspected attack in the area in just two weeks.
The 49-year-old Arizona man was in waist-deep water on Fire Island when he was attacked around 6 p.m. when the shark bit his “left wrist and buttock,” according to Suffolk County police.
The victim was flown to Stony Brook University Hospital after remaining remarkably able to get out of the water.
This latest encounter came just hours after a shark attacked a paddleboarder around 7:30 a.m. on Smith Point Beach, also in Suffolk County, New York.
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said in a news conference that the beach “is once again closed to swimming due to a shark bite that occurred this morning.”
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone holds a news conference following the 2nd shark attack in 10 days at Smith Point Beach. “You interact with marine life whenever you’re out in the ocean, but they’re closer to shore now,” Bellone said
The victim, a 41-year-old man, suffered a four-inch laceration on his leg from the bite.
The man was knocked off his board during the attack and managed to hit the shark.
As the shark circled back, a wave helped the man escape and carried him back to shore, where he sought help.
The victim told officers he believed his attacker was a sand tiger shark about four feet long.
Warmer water temperatures, cleaner oceans, and more food are leading to more interactions between sharks and humans.
“This is an issue of incredible importance to all of us here in Suffolk County,” Bellone said.
Zachari Gallo describes fending off a shark at Smith Point Beach in New York on July 3. He said: “I met the shark three times. I went boom, boom, boom. I think on the third it rolled back and its cock caught me in the chest.
Gallo suffered a bite on his hand after knocking the shark off him
Gallo had chest stitches and Suffolk County officials closed Long Island’s beach to swimming Sunday after the unprecedented shark attack
Lifeguard Zachari Gallo was playing the role of a victim during a training exercise when a five-foot shark bit him in the chest and hand on July 3.
He had stitches in his chest, and Suffolk County officials closed Long Island’s beach to swimming Sunday after the unprecedented shark attack.
The lifeguard said when he felt the texture of his attacker, he knew it was a shark.
“I felt a sharp, sharp pain and when I felt the rubbery texture, I knew it was some kind of shark,” Gallo said CBS.
He said: “I hit the shark three times. I went boom, boom, boom. I guess on the third it rolled back and its cock caught me in the chest.’
“We had not seen our beach closed to swimming in the history of Smith Point County Park since it opened in 1959,” Bellone said Wednesday. “I think it’s an indication, though, that what we’re seeing is something of a new normal.”
“Interactions between humans and sharks may be increasing now, and fortunately we haven’t seen any significant injuries.”
A swimmer at Jones Beach had suffered a suspicious shark bite on his right foot June 30 as part of the spate of encounters.
Bellone gave residents safety tips, including avoiding dusk and dawn swimming when there are no lifeguards, “wearing shiny jewelry,” entering the water when bleeding, and not going “too far out.”
He added that swimming in a group “always makes sense” so “if someone is in need, help is immediately there.”
“You interact with marine life whenever you’re out in the ocean, but they’re closer to shore now,” Bellone said.
The attacks in New York are coming when a 17-year-old girl lost a leg after being bitten by a shark off Florida Strand – only to be saved when her EMT brother knocked the creature off her thigh.
Addison Bethea, 17, is pictured at the hospital in Tallahassee days after a shark attack. Brother Rhett Willingham, 22, left, saved her life by batting the shark away
Addison Bethea was attacked when the teen and her half-brother, Rhett Willingham, 22, sloshed across the waves near Grassy Island off Keaton Beach in Taylor County in just five feet of water.
Her father, Shane Addison, 46, told DailyMail.com his daughter was swimming in the water in Brother Rhett’s boat about a mile and a half from shore when she suddenly felt something hit her back leg.
“Addison thought her brother was just messing around until a ten foot shark latched onto her thigh and she started screaming and there was blood everywhere,” he said.
When his daughter tried to pull the shark off her leg, her brother began pounding the animal continuously to pry his sister free. When she was free, he grabbed her and carried her to his boat. A random stranger saw that the couple was in distress.
Rhett placed his sister on the stranger’s boat and then used a 4ft tourniquet around her right thigh to stop the bleeding.
“The shark got her bad,” Shane said. “She was very pale and almost in shock.”
Rhett called an ambulance and when they got back to shore, she was flown to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital about 80 miles away.