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06/21/2005 Frank Johnson (Mexico)

Posted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:20 am
by sharkbait
4:21 p.m. June 22, 2005

SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO – Mexican naval authorities were patrolling the beaches along Baja California's southern tip after a shark bit a 34-year-old Colorado man, officials said Wednesday.
The man was surfing Tuesday at San Luis beach, 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of San Jose del Cabo on the Gulf of California, when he felt something bite his left foot, emergency official Francisco Cota said. The man shouted to his friends, who helped him out of the water.

Cota said sharks have been seen in the region since April, but that municipal police officers stationed on the beach have begun warning visitors that they may be lurking in the area.

Since the attack, other local officials have begun monitoring the area and warning people to stay out of the water. Naval officials have also started patrolling deeper waters just off the coast, searching for sharks.

Officials said they had no reports of sharks at the popular tourist beaches of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo.

However, authorities have warned people away from the beaches of San Luis, Santa Elena and Zacatitos, popular with residents of nearby areas as well as tourists interested in adventure excursions and water sports.

Posted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:20 am
by sharkbait
Surfer bitten by shark near Nine Palms in Southern Baja

Around seven o'clock this morning, June 20, 2005, Frank Johnson, fifties from Colorado, paddled out by himself to grab a few waves at a break just north of Nine Palms on the east cape of Southern Baja.

I climbed out of my tent to check the waves. The sun did its early morning job as well as the southwest swell of three to four feet. My friend, Todd Darcel, sat awake in his tent, looking out the screen door. The glassy six-foot faces caused a quick brushing of the teeth, sunscreen, and I was on my way to the water. Todd worked a bit slower at camp.

As I stretched a bit, I noticed a guy running down the beach toward me, gaining the paddle out spot in no time. I looked at Todd walking down and back at this guy, Bodie Johansson, 24 of Telluride, CO.

I asked what was going on whereupon he replied that a guy was just bitten by a shark at the next spot up, called "shark fin" by another surfer. He figured I could tell the three guys in the water at Nine Palms that there's an awful lot of blood out there, which I managed to do quickly.

The injury, according to Bodie and other sources, came on the foot and ankle, hitting twice in quick succession. Frank Johnson began yelling for help, even waking my friend Todd.

When Bodie heard Frank yelling, he spotted him paddling in and pulled him from the water. Frank was rushed to San Jose del Cabo for medical attention after a group of campers loaded him in a truck with a tourniquet.

No other follow up reports are available at this time.
As far as prior attacks on this coast are concerned, locals living in the area attest to no other instances.

As frequent area visitor Sean Collins says,"on two separate occasions over the years I've seen single 5-6 foot bull sharks cruising in very shallow water just a few feet off the beach in this exact same area. They were very easy to see as the road was right above them. Kinda gives you the jitters, as I also like to surf this area alone quite a bit. Probably a good idea to not surf at dawn or dusk when the bait fish are on the menu."

As a Floridian, I can guess the "six foot" shark mistook Frank's foot for baitfish in the dawn, fairly turbulent water, despite its normal clarity.