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Man critically injured in shark attack on Hawaii Island

HONOLULU (KHON2) - A shark attack Saturday morning has shaken a private community on the Big Island.

Hawaii county officials told KHON2 a 25-year-old man was attacked while he was stand up paddle boarding.

We're told the victim is a resident of the community at Kukio Golf and Beach Club. 

He was last listed in critical condition.

The attack happened around 9:30 a.m. at Kukio Beach on the west coast. 

The fire department said a man was stand up paddle boarding with his father about 100-150 yards offshore when the shark swam up.

We're told there aren't any county lifeguards but a private safety team was at the beach at the time.

"Apparently they had heard a scream from the ocean and they took a four man canoe out to find a male individual who had been bumped off his paddle board about 100-150 yards offshore," Fire Capt. Michael Grace said. "They recovered him from the ocean. He had injuries to his right side extremities. The bystanders and the staff there at Kukio did a wonderful job and applied some tourniquets before EMS arrived."

The man was air-lifted to North Hawaii Community Hospital. 

A spokesperson said he was undergoing surgery and would possibly be taken to Queens Medical Center on Oahu.

According to the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the last time there was a shark attack on the Big Island was in 2015.

Four people were injured in those incidents.

Officials encourage beach goers to be vigilant when getting in the water.

"Any water activities make sure you have at least one person with you. I think in this case had he been alone, the outcome might've been quite a bit different," Grace said.

DLNR said the beach is closed until noon tomorrow.

A decision will be made to reopen beaches based on observations Sunday morning. 


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