NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. -- Swimmers were again cleared from a New Smyrna Beach Monday after a third swimmer in three days was bitten by a shark and treated at a hospital.
The latest victim was the ninth recorded shark bite of the year in Volusia County, putting the number of bites ahead of the record breaking "Year Of The Shark" in 2001, according to beach records. Monday's bite happened when an 18-year-old was trying to get back on a surfboard near the Ponce De Leon Inlet's south jetty.
The victim received stitches at a Central Florida hospital.Several shark sightings in the water prompted lifeguards to clear the water Monday, Local 6 reported. Meanwhile, over the weekend two different swimmers were treated at hospitals after being bitten by sharks. A 24-year-old man stepped off of his surfboard in chest-deep water near a jetty in New Smyrna Beach Sunday and was bitten on his right calf.
He was taken to Bert Fish Medical Center and treated. On Saturday, a 21-year-old man was treated at a hospital after a shark bit his foot while he was surfing in the same area Saturday. Officials said Mark Pattison of Lake Mary was injured Saturday after he got of his surfboard near a jetty in New Smyrna Beach. Capt. Jack Driskell of the Volusia County Beach Patrol said the man's injuries were not life-threatening. He underwent minor surgery Saturday.
In 2001, there were some 22 recorded bites -- the most ever in Volusia County. By the end of April 2001, there had only been eight bites in the area, one less than this year, beach records said.
I really like sharks, I think they are amazing creatures, and they scare the hell out of me. But, once someone gets bitten (or eaten), wouldn't you think people would stop swimming there?