The New Smyrna Beach Jetty witnessed a heart-pounding moment on Tuesday. As the morning sun broke, Mark Summerset’s peaceful surfing session at the Florida shoreline took a terrifying turn. Mark Summerset, a 38-year-old surfer from South Carolina was confronted with a mysterious ocean predator. Locals conveyed a shark suddenly snapped at his face when he jumped off his board after a wave.

The chilling encounter took place around 7:50 a.m. This incident has contributed to the growing tally of shark attacks in Volusia County, also known as the ‘Shark Bite Capital of the World’. 

What Happened While Surfing 


Article continues below this ad

The incident unfolded as Mark rode a wave, only to be met by the sudden strike of a spinner shark, according to the officials. He was immediately admitted to AdventHealth Hospital in New Smyrna Beach. Summerset was also taken to Halifax Health, a level-two trauma medical center as a precautionary measure. 

However, he was later released the same day. As per the reports, Summerset suffered a 2-inch laceration near his right cheek, with a chilling reminder of the ocean’s unpredictable depths. Ocean Rescue Captain, Alex Miller described the harrowing moment, saying, “He did not see what it was but the assumption was that it was a shark.”

Read More: California Dogs Grab the Attention of the Sporting World as They Conquer the Ocean to Raise Money

Concurrently, other swimmers and surfers had also reported shark activity in the area. With an abundance of bait fish, this is a common occurrence near the jetty. Ron Robinson, a seasoned surfer in the area, shed light on the dynamics. “Nine out of 10 times it’s because (the surfer will) fall in the shallow water, and they’ll spook the shark, and it’s a reaction bite,” he explained. 

Increased Shark Activity Raises Concerns 


Article continues below this ad

According to WKMG-TV, this incident marked the area’s seventh shark attack in 2023, adding to its notorious reputation. Volusia County has an alarming total of 32 shark attacks recorded, starting from 2010 to January 13, 2023. Experts are suggesting swimmers and water enthusiasts prioritize the lifeguarded areas to maintain safety. 

Wyatt Werneth, public service spokesperson for the American Lifeguard Association and a lifeguard with 28 years of experience, commented on the scenario. “They don’t want to attack in the sense of a serial killer or a murderer,” he shared. 

While shark encounters are a global concern, recent statistics show that they remain relatively rare. Florida Museum of Natural History’s file on International Shark Attacks records 108 alleged shark-human interactions worldwide in 2022. Amongst these, 57 attacks were confirmed as unprovoked shark bites on humans, while the rest 32 were provoked bites.


Article continues below this ad

Mark Summerset’s encounter illuminates the need for vigilance and awareness while enjoying the ocean’s beauty. It also emphasizes the importance of safety measures to mitigate shark bites. As beachgoers continue to navigate these waters, the delicate balance between human recreation and the ocean’s wild inhabitants remains a challenge.

Watch This Story: Big Wave Surfer Matt Bromley Gives Fans Sneak-Peek Into His One-of-a-Kind Spree