Breaking News
More () »

Tampa Bay and Sarasota's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Tampa Bay and Sarasota, FL | WTSP.com

Atlanta man attacked by shark in Florida Keys

Authorities said the man's injuries were described as severe.

MARATHON, Fla. — Authorities in South Florida said an Atlanta man was airlifted to a Miami trauma center on Sunday morning after being bitten by a shark.

According to the Monroe County, Florida Sheriff's Office. the incident occurred in the area of Sombrero Key Light. According to the Associated Press, 30-year-old Andrew Eddy was in a private boat with his family and was snorkeling at a nearby reef when he was bitten in the shoulder.

The sheriff's office said he was then brought in to Sombrero Beach around 10:30 a.m. where paramedics and sheriff's deputies awaited his arrival. From there, he was airlifted to Ryder Trauma Center in Miami.

His exact condition wasn't released; though, the sheriff's office said his injury "was described as severe."

Sheriff Rick Ramsay spoke on the incident Sunday and paid tribute to the first responders who arrived so quickly.

“This was a very rare medical crisis for the Florida Keys, but everyone came together — including those witnesses on the boat to 911 Communicators to all our emergency responders — in order to ensure this victim received life-saving care,” Sheriff Ramsay said.

As for the shark itself, witnesses described it as being between eight and 10 feet in length and that there had been a bull shark spotted in the area previously by boaters.

Authorities said there was no fishing or chumming the water near where the bite happened. National Geographic describes the sharks as aggressive and suggests they often live near high-population areas. The magazine suggests they are also among some of the most likely to bite a human due to these characteristics.