Surfer in Northern California hospitalized after shark bite

SONOMA COUNTY, Calif. — A surfer at a Northern California beach was hospitalized Sunday after he was bitten by a shark, authorities said.

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The man, who is in his 30s, was attacked off Salmon Creek Beach, just north of Bodega Bay, the East Bay Times reported. The attack occurred at about 9 a.m. PDT.

The man suffered wounds to his left thigh, the newspaper reported. He was flown to a hospital in Santa Rosa with what the California Highway Patrol described as critical injuries.

Fellow surfers and bystanders helped the man ashore and gave him first aid and applied a tourniquet until paramedics arrived, Capt. David Bynum with the Bodega Bay Fire Protection District told The Press-Democrat of Santa Rosa.

It was unclear what species of shark attacked the man.

“He was conscious and alert when he left the scene but obviously had a significant wound to his leg,” Josh Perucchi, of the Bodega Bay Volunteer Fire Department, told the Times. “He’s expected to survive.”

The North and South Salmon beaches stretch for nearly two miles and are a popular local surfing destination, KPIX reported. While shark attacks are rare at the beach, a woman was attacked there by a great white shark in May 2019, according to the television station.