Spear Fisherman Attacked by Great White Shark in California

Getty Images Shark
Getty Images

Nov. 26 (UPI) — A man is in stable condition in a local hospital after a great white shark attacked him while he spear fished a few hundred yards off Pebble Beach in California. The shark bit his thigh, causing significant damage.

Grigor Azatian, 25, was fishing with his father on Friday afternoon when the shark attacked. A pair of off duty police officers, fishing nearby, helped the man’s father carry the injured fisherman to shore.

The trio applied a tourniquet to the man’s leg before he was rushed to the hospital. Surgeons successfully closed the wound and Azatian is now recovering.

“It was a shock for me,” the man’s father, Armen Azatian, told KSBW-8 TV. “It was a horrifying situation. My thought was just to try and help him to stop the bleeding.”

Several beachgoers witnessed the rescue, one of whom said there was significant blood loss.

While there haven’t been any shark sightings in Monterey County, the beaches near the incident are now posted with signs warning of the possible presence of great white sharks in the waters.

Shark sightings in Southern California have been more common. On Friday, a great white was hooked by a fisherman casting from the San Clemente Pier. The shark was able to wrestle free, but not before the owner of San Clemente Pier Grill & Tackle, Scott Shipley, caught the skirmish on film.

“It’s scary to think this great white is sitting there,” Shipley told the Orange County Register. “That’s a pretty ferocious animal. At the same time, it was cool to see.”

With ocean temperatures finally starting to drop, researchers say great white sharks have begun to leave Southern California.

“This time of year when our water temperatures dip below, you know, 62 degrees, is normally when they start to make that move,” Chris Lowe, head of the Shark Lab at Cal State Long Beach, told NBC4 media partner KPCC.

The latest sightings, however, suggest at least a few stragglers remain.

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