What was initially reported as a minor injury turned out to be far more serious.
Markus Groh, 49, was on a shark dive nearly 50 miles east of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Sunday when he was bit in the leg by a bull shark at about 10 a.m., according to a report by local WPTV NewsChannel 5.
The Austrian lawyer was diving from the 70-foot commercial diving vessel Shear Water with the boat owner from Riviera Beach, Fla. when the shark attacked. The owner called the Coast Guard for assistance shortly after 10 a.m. and they arrived promptly on the scene in a HH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter, according to the Sun Sentinel, the local newspaper.
The Coast Guard hoisted the man off the boat and flew him to JacksonMemorialHospital in Miami, according to the Coast Guard report, and was pronounced dead today.
However Neal Watson, president of the Bahamas Diving Association says Shear Water's owner was sent a warning previously to stop hosting the dangerous shark dives since he did not provide a cage to protect the divers, according to the TV news report.
"It was a ticking time bomb," stated Watson in the report. "It was a case of not if but when something was gonna happen."
This is hardly the first shark attack to be seen in Florida in recent times. What is believed to be a bull shark bit a college student in SarasotaBay near the end of summer 2007, leaving her with visible marks on her side.
- Elizabeth Ellis