New York hit by THIRD shark attack: Lifeguard John Mullins mauled by Tiger near Ocean Beach
Two lifeguards and a 57-year-old swimmer were mauled in three separate shark attacks at popular beaches on New York's coastline. The string of incidents started at the end of June, and the latest attack, on Thursday, July 7, involved a lifeguard who was carrying out a training exercise.
After a 57-year-old swimmer was attacked on Thursday, June 30, off Jones Beach, around 10 miles west of Ocean Beach, the other two subsequent shark attacks have been on lifeguards. While lifeguard John Mullins was mauled on July 7 on Ocean Beach, lifeguard Zach Gallo was attacked on July 3 near Smith Point Beach.
Another Long Island lifeguard bitten by a shark during a training exercise this week. 😬😬17-year-old John Mullins, shares his story with us, at 5 on @ABC7NY #sharks #LongIsland pic.twitter.com/qTsuPHjZf2— Stacey Sager (@staceysager7) July 8, 2022
The 17-year-old Mullins was attacked by a tiger sand shark around 11 am during a lifeguard training exercise. He was about 150 feet offshore in Ocean Beach on Fire Island when the attack occurred, reports News 12. He was admitted to South Shore University Hospital and received multiple stitches after the attack left him with foot injuries.
"I didn't really feel the bite at first. My adrenaline was rushing right away," he told the portal. "I was like, 'Oh my God, I've got to go.' It was crazy. I thought it was following me, so I was freaking out..." Mullins added. He is reportedly recovering from the injury but is walking with a limp. "I'm looking forward to getting back. I'll be back on Sunday, training for the test again. Just hoping not to get bit again," the lifeguard revealed.
After the attack, swimming at the Ocean Beach was prohibited for an hour. "Please be advised on Thursday, July 7, at 11.00 am our Ocean Beach lifeguards reported a shark incident & activity in the ocean area off of Ocean Beach. There is no swimming in the area until the lifeguards have deemed it safe to swim. We appreciate your cooperation," said the released statement.
Village police chief, George Hess said, "They have the purple flags up, which is a warning for dangerous sea life. They are doing inspections now, and have the Jet Skis out. They will make a determination in a little while. I believe people can go up to their knees and ankles right now," as per Newsday. Once the swimming was allowed again, visitors were only allowed to go waist-deep in the water.
In the previous attack on Sunday, July 3, at Smith Point Beach, lifeguard Zach Gallo was also completing a training exercise when he was bitten by a shark. He too received stitches from the attack. The first in this string of shark attacks happened when an unidentified 57-year-old man who was swimming off Jones Beach suffered lacerations to his right foot, as per Gothamist.