HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A Kauai firefighter suffered several large lacerations to his leg Monday afternoon after an apparent shark bite in Kauai’s Hanalei Bay.
Authorities closed the popular swimming and surfing spot after the incident, which happened about 1:45 p.m. By Tuesday afternoon, conditions were deemed safe enough for swimmers to return.
Kauai authorities said the surfer injured in the shark bite was in stable condition.
He was in the water at a spot known as “The Bowl” when he was bit by what appears to have been a tiger shark. It was estimated to have been about 13-feet-long.
Kea Dwight and his friends were on a boat about 100 yards away from the surf break when they noticed a commotion.
“Once we kinda got closer, there were a bunch of people around him and they were pointing at the guy,” Dwight said. “We went over to him and he’s like, 'I just got bitten by a shark.”
“When we were going over there, there was like blood in the water and I was like ‘oh god,’” witness Chas Weimar said. “He was weirdly calm about this. We were more freaked out about it than him”
Dwight and Weimar quickly pulled the surfer aboard the boat and rushed to shore.
“I would’ve been much worse if we didn’t get him in fast,” Dwight said. “He put the tourniquet on himself and he was breathing and stuff.”
The surfer, who friends say is a firefighter from Kauai’s west side, is recovering in the hospital.