A person was reportedly attacked by a shark at the Point Reyes National Seashore on Sunday, triggering a comprehensive multiagency search and rescue effort.
The incident came to the attention of the Coast Guard at approximately 10:40 a.m. on Sunday, when they received a distressing report of a potential shark attack in the Wildcat Beach Area, located in the southern reaches of Point Reyes National Seashore. According to the Coast Guard, it appeared that the individual had been attacked by a shark and pulled underwater.
Responding swiftly to the call, four different agencies mobilized their first responders to initiate an extensive search operation. This operation encompassed air, land, and sea efforts in the vicinity of the reported incident. As of 3 p.m. on Sunday, the missing person had not yet been located.
While the agencies involved were treating the incident as a potential shark attack, they refrained from confirming this definitively as their primary focus remained on locating the individual, according to Patton.
The National Park Service provided live updates on Twitter:
Point Reyes National Seashore, with support from cooperating agencies, has an active search and rescue in the Wild Cat beach area. A person is reported missing in the water. More details to follow.— Point Reyes NPS (@PointReyesNPS) October 1, 2023
The search continues for a missing person last seen in the water at Wildcat Beach this morning. On scene are personnel from NPS, Marin County/ Stinson Beach Fire, engines and UTVs, Reach 3 medical helicopter and a US Coast Guard helicopter and Cutter.— Point Reyes NPS (@PointReyesNPS) October 1, 2023
The National Park Service website does acknowledge the presence of great white sharks in the coastal waters off Point Reyes National Seashore, particularly in the fall when substantial numbers of seals and sea lions gather on its beaches and rocky shores. That being said, the likelihood of a shark attack remains “extremely small.”
No further details have been released by the Coast Guard or Point Reyes National Seashore authorities as the search and rescue operation continues. We will continue to provide updates as more information is made available.