A surfer is in critical condition after being killed by a shark off the coast of California.
The horrific attack came to light on Sunday morning when the victim, Eric, was surfing with friends near Salmon Creek Beach in Sonoma County.
According to Bodega Bay Fire Protection District officials, Eric, who is in his 30s, was bitten on the thigh by a shark under his board.
His friend Jared Davis describes the traumatic event Kpix, adding that the attack gradually unfolded as Eric shouted for help.
“I looked at the shark’s dorsal fin and then I saw the tail fin, Davis recalled.
“They were going down in the water. It certainly wasn’t like a quick attack. It was nice and slow. Peak like a dolphin.”
Davis, who was swimming about 15 yards away, said that Eric shouted “Shark!” As he went back to the shore with a “red stripe” of blood running through his wetsuit.
About 12 fellow surfers rushed to help Eric to the beach, where he gave first aid until paramedics arrived.
“The first thing we did was to use a surf leash to put on a tourniquet,” explained Davis. KGO. “We did this by having two separate surf leashes tie them as tightly as we could.”
Eric was then taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital in critical condition. He is expected to survive.
Paramedics Jonathan Bauer and Timothy Saluzzo praised the swift actions of the surfers who came forward to help Eric.
“Based on the care he received prior to arrival, I think it really helped save his leg,” Saluzzo said.
Bauer said that Eric managed to fight off the shark by striking it in the face.
Salmon Creek Beach was closed to visitors for two days in the wake of the attack.
Officials said it is unclear what type of shark struck Eric, but great whites are known to live in the waters around Bodega Bay.
Another surfer, Katie Wilson, was bitten by a shark about 100 yards off North Salmon Creek Beach in May 2019.
So far in 2021 57 shark attacks have been reported in the US, according to TrackingSharks.com.
Just last week, there was a 15 year old boy Bitten on his birthday while swimming off the coast of Florida.