Off-duty lifeguard attacked by shark - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Off-duty lifeguard attacked by shark

A shark bites a surfer and it's the second attack in our area in just three days.

The latest victim is a surfer who went one-on-one with the creature off Jupiter Island. It happened around 9:30 Monday morning near the Jupiter Island Club.

An off-duty lifeguard who works at the Club, Steven Burdelski, 22, of Hobe Sound, was out in the ocean, doing some surfing prior to starting his shift.

It's the first time a shark has bitten somebody at the club.

"We were all standing inside and we heard, one of the, the head of the lifeguards came in and said that one of the lifeguards had been swimming and was bitten by a shark," said Alan Pruitt, who works at the Jupiter Island Club in the spa.

The victim was rushed to Jupiter Medical Center with what was described as a minor injury to his foot.

Earlier Monday, he was listed in stable condition. At the family's request, the hospital is not releasing any further information. Reached by phone in his hospital room, Burdelski and his father declined to comment.

Friday afternoon, Melissa Hardcastle, 27, of Palm Beach Gardens was bitten by a shark while surfing near Carlin Park in Jupiter. She was treated at Jupiter Medical Center for a bite wound to her foot and was released from the hospital Saturday.

Experts say, sharks are all over our coast right now following bait fish heading south.

Biologists have commented, sharks are not looking to bite people. Dr. Ray Waldner, professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University and shark expert, says, "If the water is dirty, they may mistake a person, a case of mistaken identity."

Dr. Waldner continued to say, swimmers should avoid areas of murky ocean water and schools of fish, which sharks may be targeting.

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