PERRY — A teenage girl was seriously injured when a shark attacked her off Florida’s Gulf Coast, authorities said.
The attack occurred Thursday afternoon off Keaton Beach, according to a Taylor County Sheriff’s Office news release.
The 17-year-old girl had been looking for scallops in the water with her family when a 9-foot shark wrapped its jaws around the girl’s thigh, according to statement from her family.
The girl poked the shark in the eyes and punched it before her brother, who is a firefighter, managed to fight the shark off and pull the girl onto a stranger’s boat. The brother put a tourniquet on the girl’s leg to slow blood loss.
After she was brought to shore, the girl was airlifted about 60 miles to a hospital in Tallahassee, the state capital, officials said. Doctors told the family that the girl’s leg suffered extensive damage.
Officials didn’t immediately know what kind of shark bit the girl.