Santa Cruz ocean waters closed after shark attacks kayaker off Steamer Lane

SANTA CRUZ — A large shark bit a Kevlar kayak 11 a.m. Tuesday about a quarter mile from Steamer Lane and the experienced boater, who had his own VHF radio, called for help and was not hurt, according to the Santa Cruz Fire Department.

All water activities, including surfing, kayaking and swimming, are prohibited from the San Lorenzo rivermouth to Fair Avenue in the Westside until sunrise Saturday, according to Fire Chief Jim Frawley.

“Attacks like these are extremely rare in Santa Cruz County and we are so thankful that the kayaker wasn’t injured,” Frawley said. “This is a reminder that swimming in the ocean does carry some risk and we encourage all swimmers, surfers and kayakers to be mindful of their surroundings and follow directions of lifeguards and marine safety staff.”

Santa Cruz Harbor Patrol officers responded within 90 seconds to distress call, Frawley said.

“They got out there and pulled him to safety,” Frawley said. “This was someone who knows what he’s doing. He’s very well versed.”

There were witnesses on some nearby fishing boats and the seas were calm under the sunny sky.

In accordance with the Santa Cruz County Shark Incident Action Plan, Main Beach, Cowell Beach — and other waters a mile from the attack — are closed until Saturday morning.

“We’re not closing the beach. We are closing water activity,” Frawley said. “We’re just going to appeal to them. ‘Help us out here. There’s plenty of other places people go paddle and kayak.'”

Those who violate the order could face citations, he said.

“We don’t want to do that,” Frawley said. “Marine safety staff and lifeguards will monitor the area in the meantime.”

He also said Santa Cruz firefighters are trained to respond to major traumas that may arise in a shark attack.

Tribune News Service
Published by
Tribune News Service

Recent Posts

San Francisco Giants set 40-man roster ahead of Rule 5 deadline, retain flexibility

The San Francisco Giants have completed their 40-man roster ahead of the Rule 5 draft eligibility deadline, adding right-handed pitchers…

5 hours ago

Defense motion to dismiss murder indictment against tenant rights lawyer denied

A judge in San Francisco ruled Monday there was no evidence of prosecutorial misconduct in the indictment of a tenant…

5 hours ago

Oakland Athletics finalize 40-man roster ahead of Rule 5 eligibility deadline

The Oakland Athletics finalized their 40-man roster on Tuesday, in advance of the Rule 5 Draft. The A's acquired right-handed pitcher…

5 hours ago

Lefty O’Doul’s returns at new Fisherman’s Wharf location

Officials and patrons turned out Tuesday to celebrate the grand re-opening of Lefty O'Doul's Ballpark Buffet and Cafe, which featured…

6 hours ago

Sunset District church pastor among men arrested in child porn stings

The pastor of a Lutheran church in the Sunset District is among the five men who have been arrested in…

7 hours ago

Alleged destruction of evidence threatens criminal case against SF deputies

A sheriff’s deputy and a former deputy accused of staging an inmate fight club in San Francisco jail could have…

8 hours ago