Just about a week after a 17-year-old girl lost her leg and some fingers in a shark attack off North Carolina, another teen was bit just 150 miles away.
Austin Reed, 19, was surfing at Ocean Isle Beach in North Carolina Monday when a shark chomped down on his right foot.
Luckily, Austin's mom was also at the beach. She's a nurse and helped him on shore. He had puncture wounds on his foot, causing serious bleeding, but his mom made a tourniquet out of a beach towel and tied it around his leg.
Austin's sister remained calm when she called 911, telling the dispatcher about his condition and saying they were putting pressure on the wound.
He was rushed to New Hanover Hospital in Wilmington and is now recovering from surgery.
Austin's attack came just about a week after Paige Winter was pulled under the water at Fort Macon State Park in North Carolina.
Fortunately her father, Charlie, a firefighter and paramedic, sprang into action. "He punched the shark in the face [five] times before it let go," Paige’s grandmother posted on social media.
The 17-year-old's dad is being praised for saving his daughter's life. Sadly, the teen's left leg had to be amputated above the knee. She also lost several fingers in the attack.
Paige was attacked by a bull shark, which are considered even more dangerous than great white sharks. They're an aggressive species that hunt along shorelines. It is unknown what kind of shark attacked Austin.
Joe Yaiullo, curator and co-founder at the Long Island Aquarium, said Paige's brave dad did the right thing to save his daughter.
"Paige’s dad did exactly what you're supposed to do. You are in the fight for your life. You want to start throwing punches, whatever you can, especially in the head region," he said.
There were 32 unprovoked shark attacks in the U.S. in 2018, more than any other country that had shark attacks that year, according to the International Shark Attack Files at the Florida Museum of Natural History. However, that was significantly lower than the 53 unprovoked attacks in 2017.