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Shark fatally attacks body surfer in Santa Barbara County; beaches closed [Updated]


Authorities have closed several beaches in Santa Barbara County after a deadly shark attack Friday morning near the coastal town of Surf.

Officials at Vandenberg Air Force Base told The Times that they have closed Surf, Wall and Minuteman beaches for 72 hours due to the attack.

[Updated at 11:56 p.m.: A base spokesman said the Santa Barbara County coroner's investigators are at the beach and that the investigation is being handled in conjunction with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department.]

The Santa Maria Times reported that a body surfer was fatally bitten by a shark. The paper said the body surfer was not connected with the military base.

Surf is located north of Santa Barbara and west of Lompoc on the Vandenberg Air Force Base.

-- Andrew Blankstein

Comments () | Archives (13)

There's no coastal town of surf you idiot. There's a train station now, and thats it. Great reporting.

There is no "town" of SURF, its just a beach.

Great white breeding ground...how unfortunate


This is a real setback for Surf's tourism industry. Not just the shark attack, but the whole "not existing" thing, too.

I blame big government.

Surf Beach, California

This is one pest I would love to see go extinct.

As much as I loved swimming and boogie boarding in the ocean in my younger years, I've recently have become very reluctant to venture too far from the surf. The shark sighting have increased from early summer. And now this attack will get people to second guess if this may get a little too risky. On top of the drownings from rip currents, venturing in the ocean is adding to the 1000 ways to day. I suspect the shark was a great white. What a shame and loss for the family of this man, though he died doing what I'm certain he loved doing.

RIP.... I bet he died doing what he loved.... all forms of riding waves are great, body surfing, body boarding and surfing... a great way of life.

The majority of shark attacks take place in approximately 3 feet of water.

This is for Mark ! The surfer was in the sharks territory and he knew the risks he was taking.If surfers want to take the risks ,then what happens is on them ! I am sorry for the surfer and his/her family,but stop blaming the sharks !! God put them in our waters to keep them clean !!! Respect them and fear them,but don't put so damn much blame on them!! We are supposed to have a bigger brain then them,SO use it !!!

Confusing headline: "Shark fatally attacks body surfer in Santa Barbara County"

Was the shark killed?


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