Officials say a Florida beach has been closed following two apparent shark bites just five minutes apart.
The Florida Times-Union reports that Fernandina Beach, just northeast of Jacksonville, was closed to swimmers Friday afternoon.
Fernandina Beach Fire Chief Ty Silcox says a 30-year-old man and a 17-year-old boy were bitten on the feet. Neither victim got a clear look at what bit them. Their injuries weren’t considered life-threatening.
Silcox says it’s been several years since any shark bites were reported in the area.
Dustin Theobold, the 30-year-old victim, was surfing in the area with his son when it happened.
“I was in 2 feet of water or less laying on my stomach watching him just playing in the surf, and I felt something grab onto my foot,” Theobold told WJXT. “It looks like I might have some tendon damage, but it’s cut, it’s bad. It’s 4-inch lacerations on the top and bottom.”
Theobold was taken to a hospital for surgery.
Minutes after Theobold’s encounter, a 17-year-old boy was attacked by a shark while he was wading in shallow water. The second attack happened just over a mile south of where Theobold was attacked, according to WJXT. The teen is expected to recover.
Ocean rescue will continue to monitor the water for sharks and will reopen the beach once it’s deemed safe.