Sharks attack three off Florida's east coast
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida (CNN) -- Sharks attacked three surfers off Florida's upper east coast Sunday, a few miles from where three men were bitten the previous day.
The day's first attack occurred about 11:30 a.m. EDT when a shark bit the foot of a 17-year-old girl about 100 yards off the beach at Wilbur-By-The-Sea south of Daytona Beach, said Joe Wooden, deputy chief of the Daytona Beach Patrol.
Wooden said the victim, whose name was not released, was bitten as she was riding a surfboard; she was taken to Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach where she was treated and released.
"She caught a wave, she came off her board, she was going to say something to me, and she screamed and she started yelling," said Scott Love, the girl's boyfriend. "I jumped off my board, threw it to shore and went to her."
Sharks bit two other surfers -- a 32-year-old man and another 17-year-old girl -- around 1:15 p.m. Sunday off New Smyrna Beach, about 15 miles south of the morning attack, Wooden said. Both were taken to Bert Fish Medical Center in New Smyrna Beach for treatment.
The man was bitten on the right foot and the girl was bitten on the left calf, said Wooden.
The man, who identified himself as Bobby Kurrek, was treated and released. He said he saw about two dozen sharks swimming around him when he was bitten.
"Two of them just came at me as fast as they could and hit my surfboard, went under my surfboard, came from behind and pulled me off," Kurrek said.
A hospital spokeswoman said the female would require surgery on her left calf. "It is not a life threatening injury," the spokeswoman said. "She's in good condition."
The girl's father, Ted Chapman, said his daughter Becky felt something hit her in the back just before the bite.
"She knew that something had a hold of her leg, and she reached down and felt the shark and started punching it," he said.
The attacks came a day after three men were bitten by sharks during a surfing competition at Ponce Inlet, on the Atlantic Ocean between Daytona Beach and New Smyrna Beach and about three miles from where a shark bit Sunday's first victim.
Jeff White, 20, and Dylan Feindt, 19, were treated for wounds on their feet from shark bites. Jason Valentine, 20, underwent surgery for a hand injury.
The event, sponsored by the Conference of the National Scholastic Surf Association, continued Sunday but was moved about one mile south of the Saturday location.
The Saturday attacks forced beach closings for about two hours. Wooden said none of those attacked Sunday was involved in the competition.
Leon Johnston, the association's director, said surfers on Saturday saw black-tip sharks up to 6 feet long and bull sharks reaching 8 feet.
Of the 34 reported shark attacks worldwide this year, 14 have been in Volusia County, said Wooden. "We're pretty much keeping an eye on things," said Wooden.
On Thursday, scores of sharks were spotted swimming in the Gulf of Mexico near Lido Key off Sarasota, Florida. Two days earlier, a similar school was seen in shallow waters off Anclote Key, north of Tampa.
In July, a Mississippi boy's arm was bitten off by a shark at Gulf Islands National Seashore near Pensacola in northwest Florida. Doctors were able to reattach the arm, and the boy is recovering at home where he remains in a light coma.
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