Violence has grown more common across America in recent years, with Fox News reporting that the homicide rate jumped a staggering 30% in 2020.
Two-legged predators aren’t the only threat, however — a fact that was tragically proven late last week when a California man died in a rare, but vicious, shark attack.
“Apparent shark attack”
According to the Washington Examiner, a 31-year-old surfer was killed off the coast of central California near Morro Bay on Friday morning.
“At 10:48 am a male surfer off State Parks Beach just north of Atascadero Road was pronounced dead at the scene,” an official statement from Morro Bay read.
It added: “Harbor, Police and Fire Departments responded to a report of a male victim unresponsive on the beach after he was pulled from the water suffering from an apparent shark attack.”
Eric Endersby of Morro Bay serves as harbor patrol director, and he told the Los Angeles Times how “word spread like wildfire” following the attack. He noted that “people quickly got out of the water.”
Surfer tries to help
Endersby also stated that the victim was a bodyboarder, and said a female surfer came to his aid after he was reportedly bitten by the shark. The pair were apparently unknown to one another prior to the incident.
He went on to say that poor weather conditions probably limited the number of people who were in the water on Friday, a fact that may have saved more lives.
“Mother Nature was on our side because we could have had more people out for sure,” the Morro Bay official said before offering advice on how beach goers can stay say.
“If you see a lot of bird or seal activity in the water, that’s a sign that people should be looking to get out of the water,” Endersby explained. “Human attacks are largely a case of mistaken identity.”
Three fatal incidents in 2020
Fox News reported in January that the United States saw a total of three fatal shark attacks in 2020, compared to the six which occurred off the coast of Australia.
Non-fatal attacks drastically outnumbered fatal ones, with 33 unprovoked bites occurring in America last year. Beaches in Florida accounted for roughly half of those incidents.