POSTED: 06:13 p.m. HST, Oct 30, 2012
LAST UPDATED: 07:06 a.m. HST, Oct 31, 2012
EUREKA, Calif. >> A 25-year-old surfer was recovering Tuesday after he was apparently bitten by a shark off the coast of Eureka, the latest in a string of attacks between ocean lovers and sharks in California this year.
Other surfers attended to the seriously injured man and drove him from the beach to a highway where he was transferred to an ambulance, the Eureka Times-Standard reported. He underwent surgery and was listed in fair condition.
The Humboldt County sheriff's office said the man had a 14-inch bite wound and other injuries. He told a deputy he had been attacked by a shark.
His name has not been released.
The attack happened at a popular surfing spot called the North Jetty.
Another surfer, David Hargrave, said he heard the bitten man call for help and saw him wade back to shore while bleeding heavily.
Jason Gabriel said he had just finished surfing himself when he saw several people helping the man out of the water. He had at least four gashes between his ribs and hips, Gabriel said.
"It punctured all the way through. There were guts and meat hanging," he said, adding that the victim appeared to be in shock. "He was going, 'Oh my God, oh my God.'"
Leslie Broomall, a spokeswoman at St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka, said she could not release any more information about the man's condition but he was preparing to talk to reporters about his ordeal Wednesday.
A 39-year-old man who encountered a shark while surfing in the waters off Santa Barbara County last week was not as lucky. He died after being beaten in the upper torso; a shark expert determined his injuries likely were inflicted by a 15- to 16-foot great white shark.
Meanwhile, two kayakers — one in Santa Cruz County in July and the other in San Luis Obisbo County in May — reported having sharks take big bites out of their boats.