An alligator attacked a woman in Hilton Head, South Carolina, but a neighbor saved her by hitting the 8-foot animal with a shovel until she was released.
The woman was walking her dog on Thursday morning, local authorities reported, when an alligator dragged the woman into a lagoon. A neighbor witnessed the attack and called her husband, who hit the alligator with a shovel until the woman’s leg was freed. Both neighbors entered the lagoon to help the victim, Hilton Head Island officials said in a press release.
Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue responded to call at 8:19 am about an alligator incident. Following treatment at the scene, the woman was transported to Memorial Health in Savannah. The victim was walking her small dog around the lagoon near Rookery Way when the incident occurred. The dog was not harmed.
According to Fire Rescue personnel, a witness heard commotion near the lagoon located near her home. She investigated and found the victim in the water with an alligator latched on to her lower leg(s). The witness entered the water and tried to pull the victim back to safety.The witness’s husband joined the rescue efforts and together they were able to free the woman and call 911.
In addition to Fire Rescue personnel, Hilton Head Plantation security and administrative staff, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office deputies and SC Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officers were at the scene. DNR arranged for removal and euthanization of the alligator, and plan to examine its contents to determine if had been fed, said DNR spokesman David Lucas. When fed, alligators overcome their natural wariness and can begin to associate people with food.
Hilton Head Island Government Press Release
Officers from the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources ordered the alligator to be euthanized, according to the press release. They plan to investigate if the animal had been properly fed.
The victim was transported to a local hospital. The extent of her leg injuries is still unknown, according to Fitsnews.
“We are very grateful for the quick thinking and brave neighbors who fought off the alligator and held onto the victim who was being pulled into the water by the alligator,” officials said, according to Fitsnews.
“This is an unfortunate incident. We advise residents to be aware of their surroundings, especially if they are taking walks with small pets near lagoons that are habitats for alligators,” said Joheida Fister, Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue Deputy Chief.
Hilton Head Island officials did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for additional comment.
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Harry Wilmerding on September 3, 2021
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