Thursday, May 29, 2008

3 Shark Attacks have San Onofre Area in Panic

By ALEXANDRA OLSON – 8 hours ago
SAN ONOFRE, Ca. (XP) — No one could even remember a shark attack along this stretch of Southern California coast popular with surfers and Hollywood's elite. Many of the large predators had been pulled from the ocean by fishermen. So when sharks attacked three surfers in less than a month, two fatally, it was unthinkable.

The latest attack came Saturday, when a shark chomped down on the arm of surfing enthusiast Bruce Rimes, who runs a surf shop in San Clemente.

Rimes and a handful of other surfers were out on dark, choppy waters when he felt something lift his board. He managed about five strokes before teeth sank into his arm. "Shark!" he screamed, wresting his arm back. Rimes made it to shore, escaping with a few gashes.

"There wasn't any time to panic," he said. "I thought: 'Don't want to die. Don't want to lose my arm.'"

Only later did the 49-year-old Florida native learn a local surfer had been killed by a shark at a neighboring beach the previous day. Less than a month before that, a visitor from San Francisco was killed while surfing another nearby beach.

Burgess' International Shark Attack File records an average of only forty-four fatal shark attacks around the world each year. This year, there has been at least twenty other recorded shark fatalities — among them a 66-year-old triathlete killed at Solana Beach, Calif.

After the first fatality, panicked officials strung lines of baited hooks offshore and slaughtered dozens of sharks, drawing international criticism. Authorities planned to meet Thursday to seek Burgess' advice.

Marine biologist Dr. Ralph, who runs the shark lab at California State University, Long Beach, said there is little officials can do beyond trying to keep people out of the water and studying why sharks have suddenly turned so aggressive. Hunts don't usually help, he said.

Dr. Ralph also said officials should keep the attacks in perspective.

"People have a much better chance of dying of food poisoning than being bitten by a shark," he said. "It's far more dangerous driving to the beach than it is getting in the water."

The International Shark File has found that attacks have been increasing over the past century, mostly because of the growing popularity of water sports like surfing.

After repeated appeals by environmentalists and the SOSC BOD, officials have promised to post large warning signs on beaches where sharks have attacked — a dreaded prospect for some in the surfing business.

BK was interviewed while giving surfing lessons to a couple from Texas — the only two people in the water at Old Man's and his first clients since the attacks. He usually teaches three groups a week.

Lisa Rabon, of Walnut Springs, Texas, said she and her husband came to celebrate her 50th birthday and fulfill her lifelong dream of learning to surf. She didn't learn of the attacks until after arriving and said she has seen hardly anyone else in the water.

29 comments:

Spin Evans said...

I was there and it was a bloody mess. Thank God he survived the frightening ordeal. I personally have stayed out of the water since the attacks.

robin hood said...

This is all balderdash in the first degree. So what if there are sharks. These 49 year old fools have no business in shark infested waters. Go back to the OK panhandle and swim with the stupid catfish, you morons. I'm sorry, but I ain't having a good morning.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Hood, you need an attitude adjustment.



#420

Lewie O'Doul said...

I have learned that if you don't bathe for 2-3 weeks, the sharks leave you alone. It also helps to defecate in your wetsuit.

robin hood said...

Yeah, damn straight, Anon' #1. Lemme' have a triple Tequilla in a small glass, maybe with lemon and salt.

Anonymous said...

less peeps in the water! Yeaaa!

Otis Chandler said...

excellent reporting Puttzle! There might be a Puttzle Pulitzer in the future.

Anonymous said...

O' Doule, you are funnier than you think. Like how'd you think about deficating in your spring suit. You might consider comedy writing.


#169

Anonymous said...

Please, in the name of God, stop posting false claims of shark attacks at our beach. I joined the Club back in '57. I won't go near the water. If you want to get your jollies go to the show and scream fire, you IDIOTS.


#08

Anonymous said...

I dont care. I'm staying out of the water.

lewie o'doul said...

something was sucking my toes under water last Saturday. Do you think it was a shark or a large mouth bass?? I kinda liked it!

just deducing said...

lewie,

Did the mouth feel soft and toothless? If so I'd guess Tubby or Murph.

Anonymous said...

just deducing, you are too funny for words.



#67

lewie o'doul said...

you're right, probably not a fish but that twisted little Puttzle. He always was into water sports.

jock coostow said...

he does suffer from deviant behavior and I have seen him bobbing about in the ocean with his snorkel sticking out of the water, at least I hope it's his snorkel. Oh God No!!

Spin Evans said...

excellent work Puttzle. I've had 2people call me to see if it's safe for this weekend. Of course I told them to stay home as the Coast Guard said the sharks are still lurking about.

huell howser said...

Spin, Fats and Lewie have left for San-O for the weekend. I'm headin down tonite to check out this shark scare. Do any of you have Puttzle's phone number?

captain yappie said...

Why, I'm not afraid of the sharks in the slightest.
please allow me to remove them.

Anonymous said...

Ummm. Okay Captain Yappie, remove them.

Anonymous said...

Wait a second...this exact article was written in the Orange county register about the three attacks in Mexico near Troncones Beach. It looks like whoever posted this, just changed the location to San Onofre. I googled shark attacks at San Onofre to see if anything else came up and nothing did. Hmmm...sound strange.

Oh..if you want to read the article that the OC Register published, here it is:

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gpCN5J8QAZsscBMyYi9F5Y6vXvRgD90V06PG0

Anonymous said...

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gpCN5J8QAZsscBMyYi9F5Y6vXvRgD90V06PG0

Anonymous said...

http://ap.google.com/article/
ALeqM5gpCN5J8QAZsscBMyYi9F5Y
6vXvRgD90V06PG0

Anonymous said...

Sorry guys, there is the whole link

cpt. yappie mcbragg said...

balderdash!

Anonymous said...

Great Whites at San-O... I read this. http://standuppaddlesurf.blogspot.com/2009/07/great-white-shark-at-san-onofre.html

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