Shark Attack on Ocracoke Island Beach
Contact: Outer Banks Group, 252-473-2111
On Tuesday July 19, 2011, at approximately 5:30 p.m., the National Park Service (NPS) received a report from the Hyde County Sheriff’s Office of a park visitor to Ocracoke Island who had apparently been injured by a shark. The incident occurred south of Ramp 72 in Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Ocracoke Emergency Medical Services Paramedics and NPS Rangers responded to the scene. The victim, a six year old female, had been playing near the beach with a boogie board in about 18 inches of water when the incident occurred. She received injuries to her lower right leg and foot, was treated at the scene, then flown by an East Care medical helicopter to Pitt County Memorial Hospital in Greenville, NC for further care.
No other swimmers were injured. The incident was investigated by NPS law enforcement personnel and it is considered to be a confirmed shark attack.
The last known shark attack on the Seashore occurred at around 6:00 p.m. on September 3, 2001, on a beach at Avon when a Russian couple were attacked by a shark as they swam to an offshore sandbar. The man died and his girlfriend was seriously injured.
Did You Know?
Lightning whelks eat about one large clam per month. The whelk pries the clam open with its muscular foot, wedges the clam open with its shell, then eats the soft inside of the clam. Lightning whelk shells, which whorl to the left, wash up on the beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.