Shark Attacks in Hawaii. Interview with victim of recent Reef shark attack in Hawaii.
Shark Attacks in Hawaii
Hawaii - Map of incident location
Sunday, May 11, 2003
Big Isle man
shark bites his foot
"He bit my leg and didn't
let go for at least five seconds"
A 20-year-old Kamuela man was in stable condition yesterday after he was bitten by a shark off the Big Island's Kona Coast.
Koa Paulo was swimming yesterday morning with some friends in water about 8 feet deep and not far from shore, between Magic Sands Beach and Kahaluu Beach, when he felt a bite on his right foot.
"I knew it was a shark already," Paulo said by phone from Kona Hospital yesterday evening.
"He bit my leg and didn't let go for at least five seconds. I tried to swim away. Then he just let go."
"It was bleeding a lot," Paulo said, but he was able to get out of the water on his own. Paramedics bandaged the wound at the scene and then friends drove Paulo to the hospital, where he underwent surgery. No bones were broken, he said, but doctors put a cast on him to stabilize his foot while it heals.
"At first didn't hurt at all," he said. "Now it hurts like hell."
Paulo said he thinks the shark, which friends on the shore said was 6- to 7-feet long and dark gray, was a reef shark.
"I've seen a lot of sharks in the water, from diving and stuff. It had a real round face. It wasn't a tiger (shark)."
The state Department of Land and Natural Resources closed Kahaluu and Magic Sands Beach, also known as White Sands Beach and Disappearing Sands Beach, yesterday after the 11:45 a.m. attack, said DLNR spokeswoman Deborah Ward. Signs were posted that there had been a shark sighting.