Jessica Vaughn was swimming from a boat to an inter tube off Fort Lauderdale, Fla. waters on Sunday afternoon when she says her leg was knocked by something. That knock, however, was a shark bite, which prompted her friends in the boat to haul her back to safety immediately upon seeing the shark's fin and the blood from her leg.
Fox News reported on June 3 that Vaughn is expected to make a full recovery from the attack after successfully coming through a two-hour surgery at the Broward Health Medical Center in the state. And the victim considers the experience "surreal" and says "I can't believe it happened." But she "feels so lucky" she survived it.
Fort Lauderdale Fire and Rescue personnel met the boat load of swimmers when they rushed the victim back to shore, with FLFR tweeting a photo of the injury afterward. And it shows that the bite left an undeniable impression on the lower section of the swimmer's leg.
Shark attack statistics reflect that white, tiger and bull sharks account for more than half of all shark attacks, according to Oceana. And between 2006 to 2010 there have been 179 other shark attacks reported in the U.S., with three of them fatal. And while the majority of shark attacks occur in Florida, where Vaughn was injured, other attacks have occurred in California, Georgia, Hawaii, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina and Texas.
The state of California has had two fatal shark attacks during those four years, with Florida having only one. Georgia has not had any fatal shark attacks and only two nonfatal shark attacks during the same time frame.
In other recent related attack news, a Florida man was bitten by a Western Diamondback Rattlesnake when he attempted to shoo it out from in front of his vehicle instead of driving over it on the roadway. And a black bear attacked a jogger in Alaska at a military base after she came upon its cub. Both survived their encounters--barely.
Stay up to date about how to avoid or survive wild animal and mammal encounters by accessing your state's fish and wildlife websites or visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for more information and updates on the dangers of animal attacks and other safety news as it is shared.