Tuesday, May 18, 2010

When Gator's attack

(Courtesy of Slowtwitch.com)

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water.

On Sunday morning, Doug McCard, a 35-year-old sales associate for A-1 Septic in Kissimmee, Florida was attacked by an alligator just as he was beginning a swim training session for a planned Half Ironman in June. He is now looking to compete in a duathlon, where no swimming is involved.

“It was a real hard hit and I felt the teeth,” McCard told a news conference at Orlando Regional Medical Center about the incident in Lake Mary Jane in Moss Park. “I started thinking to myself ‘…I can’t believe a gator is biting me.”

"I was shocked,” he said to the news conference. “[Before starting swimming] I always stand and take a look to see if the gators are there. There are gators in every lake, but I saw nothing [Sunday] so I swam like I always do.

“It hit me like a Mack truck."

As he recalled in the news conference, McCard stood up in the shallow brackish waters and started to swing with his elbows, not unlike an NBA tough guy trying to clear out a rebound. “I got in a pretty good elbow to the head and he released me,” he said of the gator he estimated to be between 8 and 10 feet in length. “I started yelling to try to scare him and backed off until I could run out of the water.”

Witnesses said they heard McCard screaming and yelling and running out of the water bleeding from the chest.

The gator landed five puncture wounds to McCard’s right shoulder, one to his hip, and a few more to his back. Doctors kept him overnight in case of infection.

McCard, described as an “alligator aware" Florida native who had been swimming in Florida lakes “thousands of times,” said thinks he startled the alligator and it reacted by chomping him.

“If it was after me, it would have probably taken me under and rolled because that is what Gators do,” he told the Orlando Sentinel.

McCard said he hopes to begin training again soon, but will likely avoid Lake Mary Jane.

Simon says: - Sounds a bit like the Miri Triathlon to me...Oo ere!


Cheong said...

I checked with the locals after I read your post on the Miri crocs awhile back. They comfirmed the crocs are a permanent resident but they have not heard of any attacks on humans thus far. Friendly crocs? Believe it or not.

Brybrarobry said...

My sister lives in Florida. Where there's water they're is alligators. This guy has a death wish. The only place I know in florida that is safe to swim is the YMCA. He almost qualified for a Darwin award. I sure hope he can fix that wetsuit, new one's can be expensive. haha.

plee said...

I hv heard of sightings in Port Dickson where the Tri is held too.