KEKAHA — A 28-year-old visitor from France was believed to have been attacked by a shark at Kekaha Beach Park Friday morning.
The man sustained severe injuries to his lower right leg and was transported to Wilcox Medical Center in critical condition.
The man had been surfing 100 yards off shore at a popular surf spot known as Davidson’s when he was attacked by what bystanders believe to be a roughly 12-foot tiger shark.
Kauai Fire Department Ocean Safety Bureau officials closed the beach and will reassess the water this morning to determine if it is safe for swimming.
This is the first reported shark attack on Kauai this year, said Sarah Blane, county spokeswoman.
Lifeguards posted “Shark Sighted” and “No Swimming” signs along Kekaha Beach Park and patrolled the shoreline to warn surfers and beachgoers to stay out of the water until further notice.
The last reported shark attack on the Westside was in 2012 at Pakala, when a 10-foot shark injured a surfer’s left foot. The last reported shark bite on Kauai happened at Kalapaki Beach in June when a 3-foot shark caused a minor puncture wound on the arm of a local resident.