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Homeweather forecastShark attacks in Texas, Florida put beachgoers on edge; how experts say to avoid a bite

Shark attacks in Texas, Florida put beachgoers on edge; how experts say to avoid a bite

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – As more people seek relief in the ocean from the heat, shark bites are on the rise this summer, with seven attacks in recent weeks between Florida and Texas beaches. 

The most recent shark attack happened on Monday in Volusia County, Florida. A 14-year-old boy was bitten in Ponce Inlet during a lifeguard training camp drill. He told FOX 35 Orlando he dove into the water and hit the shark. The teen needed 17 stitches in his calf.

The bite was the third over July Fourth weekend in Volusia County. The two other bites happened in New Smyrna Beach, known as the shark capital of the world. 

On July 4, four swimmers were attacked by sharks on South Padre Island in Texas over two hours. 

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Tabatha Sullivent, one of the four victims, told FOX News she lost her leg during the attack. Her husband was also bitten by the shark while attempting to pull her from the water. 

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Despite the recent attacks, Volusia County Beach Safety Director Tammy Malphurs said lifeguards are more concerned about rip currents than sharks, Florida’s No. 1 weather-related killer. Since last week, lifeguards have rescued about 500 people from rip currents and strong surf. Six Florida visitors died during a weekend in June due to rough surf and rip currents

Malphurs said Volusia County Beach Safety will make announcements and ask people to leave the water if they see a large number of sharks in the area. 

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“If you are in the ocean, and you see birds diving down feeding on bait fish, you might want to temporarily get out of that area,” Mulphers said.

Experts recommend staying out of murky water and avoiding wearing shiny jewelry in the water to prevent confusing sharks. 

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