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13-year-old girl survives after fighting off shark at beach

Dominic Smithers

| Last updated 

A 13-year-old managed to fight off a huge shark after she was attack twice.

Ella Reed was enjoying a dip off the coast of Florida last Thursday (11 May) when a six-foot long bull shark was spotted lurking in the surf.

As the teenager sat in the shallow waters of Fort Pierce Beach, the deadly creature made a beeline for her, lurching at Ella and sinking its razor sharp teeth into her ribs.

Speaking to Local 10 News, she recalled: "The shark itself was so powerful. That was what I felt the most because it was hitting my stomach really hard.


"It wouldn’t leave me alone, so I had to use my arm and use my hand too, so it got my arm and my finger."

Now, while most people, no matter how old they are, would probably panic like hell in a situation like this, Ella kept her cool.

Rather than thrashing about and trying to escape, she began thumping the shark, punching it in the face until it let go and swam off.

Ella was attacked by a shark off the coast of Florida. Credit: ABC
Ella was attacked by a shark off the coast of Florida. Credit: ABC

But the nightmare wasn't over yet as the shark then returned, attacking her once again, with Ella having to defend herself and fight the animal off for a second time.

And as the shark began circling her, she screamed out for help from her mother, who raced over to find Ella 'covered in blood pretty much from head to toe'.

Ella's mum said: "[Ella] couldn’t really see what went on. She was shaking but she was calm."

As a result of the attacks, the teenager suffered injuries to her arm, finger, knee, and stomach. In total, she had to have 19 stitches.


"I was kind of in shock about everything that happened," Ella said.

The 13-year-old had 19 stitches. Credit: WPTV
The 13-year-old had 19 stitches. Credit: WPTV

"So, I wasn’t really in pain because the adrenaline was through the roof."

Despite the terrifying ordeal, though, Ella has said she won't be deterred from going out into the sea in the future.


This comes after footage began doing the rounds on social media of a champion surfer being attacked by a great white shark.

Australian Mick Fanning, a three-time world champion, was competing at Jeffreys in South Africa back in July 2015 when a three-metre long shark attacked him, and the whole horrific incident was broadcast live.

During the attack, Fanning was pulled clear underwater for nine seconds, fearing for his life.

Fortunately, he was able to fend off the shark and get to safety.

Topics: Animals, US News, Sharks

Dominic Smithers
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