Shark bites off American tourist’s leg in Turks and Caicos
Officials said the 22-year-old was snorkeling at the Bone Yard dive site in the Princess Alexandra National Park when the attack happened.
PROVIDENCIALES, Turks and Caicos – A Connecticut woman is recovering at a Turks and Caicos hospital after authorities said a shark seriously injured her Wednesday.
Officials from the country’s Department of Environment and Coastal Resources said the 22-year-old was snorkeling at the Bone Yard dive site in the Princess Alexandra National Park when the attack happened.
In an earlier news release, the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police said the shark bit off the woman’s leg.
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Authorities said the woman was rushed to Cheshire Hall Medical Centre, where she was listed in serious condition.
Big Blue Collective, the company that ran the snorkeling trip, released the following statement Thursday:
"The extremely rare and unfortunate incident that happened yesterday afternoon, Wednesday 24th May, 2023, in the Turks & Caicos Islands, outside the reef, involving a snorkeler and a shark, occurred during a private trip. Only two individuals were in the water, which was clear and calm, when a presumed Caribbean Reef Shark left one snorkeler with an injury due to what is known in diving circles as a case of mistaken identity.
"The calm, quick and measured response from one of our captains and office team meant that the victim was extracted from the ocean and dispatched in the ambulance in 15 minutes, saving them from a potentially life-threatening situation.
"We applaud all the efforts of our team, the paramedics, and the emergency first aid responders. Our thoughts are with the victim, their family and loved ones at this time."
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Editor’s note: This story has been updated to remove the name of a resort that was previously mentioned by police and to include a statement from Big Blue Collective regarding the attack.