An American surfer had a terrifying brush with death in the jaws of a crocodile when he was viciously attacked on a popular Costa Rica beach.
The surfer was crossing a river that runs through a beach in Tamarindo on the country's Pacific coast Friday when the reptile got him by the legs.
The man might now be dead if not for the heroism of his friend, who witnesses say fought off the croc with his bare hands.
In jarring photos taken at the scene by local photographer Leo Pinero, the victim is seen being pulled from the water as passersby and rescue workers rush to his aid.
A witness told the Associated Press that the victim suffered serious wounds to his legs and head. He was rushed to a hospital, where his condition was serious but stable.
Doctors partially amputated one of his legs, according to local reports.
The area has become notorious for its crocodiles, according to Surfline and the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Telecommunications has posted signs warning of the danger.
While some locals offer cheap ferries across the river, surfers reportedly continue to wade across it daily.