2 People Bitten by Sharks on Same Day in Myrtle Beach, Including Woman Who Was with Her Grandson

·2 min read
Shark fin above water
Shark fin above water

Getty Images Picture of a shark fin above water

Two beachgoers were attacked by sharks on the same day in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, according to reports.

One of the victims, Karren Sites of Pittsburgh, told WPDE that she was standing in the water with her 8-year-old grandson, Brian, when a shark bit her arm without warning on Monday.

"I just felt something, I guess, bite me, and there was a shark on my arm. I was only in waist-deep water," Sites told the news station. "I kept pushing at it to get it off my arm, and it did."

Sites survived the attack but needed surgery and hundreds of stitches to close her wound, she told WPDE. Brian was nearly a dozen feet from Sites and was not hurt during the incident, which took place during a family vacation they had planned for a year.

"I couldn't even see the shark coming up, but all I saw was the shark jumped up, and it didn't even bite all the way," he recalled to the outlet. "I saw the movement of the tail go to the side, and then she screamed a little bit, and as soon as she touched it, it fell into the water."

PEOPLE has reached out to Sites and the Myrtle Beach Police Department for comment.

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2 People Bitten by Sharks on Same Day in Myrtle Beach
2 People Bitten by Sharks on Same Day in Myrtle Beach

getty Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

According to The Sun News, Myrtle Beach Police Master Cpl. Kevin Larke told the city's beach advisory committee that another victim suffered a "glancing bite to the leg" by a shark on the same day.

The two bites are the only ones to happen in the city this year, per the outlet. Larke said they have not been able to identify the sharks responsible for the attacks, which occurred about a half-mile from each other, the Associated Press reported.

Daniel Abel, a professor of Marine Science at Coastal Carolina University, told WPDE that swimmers should take precautions while in the water this time of year and suggested not swimming "at dawn or dusk," when some sharks could be closer to shore and feeding.

"Don't swim where there are schools of small fish offshore," he said. "Don't swim near where people are fishing near piers."

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In 2021 the United States led all countries with 47 confirmed cases of unprovoked shark bites, or 64% of the global total, according to the University of Florida. The number of U.S. shark bites was up 42% from 2020, which saw 33 incidents occur.

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Florida leads the U.S. in shark bites, with 28 of the 47 confirmed cases (60%) from 2021, the university reported.