Surfer attacked by shark off California coast

A 37-year-old surfer was flown by helicopter to a hospital Saturday after he was attacked by a shark off the California coast, authorities said.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard and Ventura County Fire Department, the man was bitten in the leg by an “unknown shark type” off the coast of Santa Barbara, near Santa Rosa Island, about 3:15 p.m., KTLA reported.

A good Samaritan told authorities about the attack, adding that a tourniquet had been placed on the victim’s leg, the television station reported.

A Coast Guard helicopter arrived at the scene about an hour after the attack, and the victim was taken by helicopter to an area hospital.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew arrived first on scene about an hour later as firefighters responded by boat, officials said. Rescuers rushed the wounded surfer to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition.

Coast Guard Lt. Benjamin McIntyre-Coble called the rescue “The best possible outcome to a truly terrifying situation,” KTLA reported.

“This individual was fortunate to be with a buddy who was able to communicate their position to the Coast Guard,” McIntyre-Coble told the television station. “We are all happy that he will be able to be with his family in time for the holidays.”