An Instagram model from California, United States says she’s lucky to be alive after she was attacked by a shark during a photo shoot.
Model and nursing student Katarina Zarutskie (@katarinazarutskie) was swimming in Staniel Cay in the Bahamas when she was bit on the wrist by a shark -- and her lucky escape was all captured on camera.
Scroll down to see what happened.
Katarina Zarutskie, a 19-year-old model and nursing student, said she had heard from locals that swimming with nurse sharks could be a fun experience so when she spotted a group of them off the coast of Staniel Cay island she jumped right into the clear blue water. However, what was supposed to be a memorable adventure quickly turned dangerous when one of the sharks bit Zarutskie’s arm and dragged her under the water. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
She said she saw multiple people swimming around in the pool with the sharks and wanted to get a photo with them. “Nurse sharks are calm creatures,” she said, adding she had seen Instagram photos of people swimming next to the animals “so many times before.” Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
So, she got into the water. She was calmly floating among the sharks when one started to take an interest in her. Speaking about the incident, she was quoted by NBC News, “He had my wrist in his mouth and I could feel his teeth sinking into my arm. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
Katarina said she was pulled underwater for a few seconds and then ripped her wrist out of the shark’s mouth as fast as she could. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
After freeing her arm from the shark’s mouth, she held up her arm out of the water to stop the blood from dripping in and attracting more sharks. She said she was scared but knew she couldn’t flail about if she wanted to make it out safely. Katarina then swam to some nearby steps and climbed out of the water and went to a local clinic to get her arm wrapped and bandaged before flying back to Florida. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
Katarina shared the incident on Instagram, but immediately attracted a lot of hate, with some saying that she was blaming the shark. However, she said she “love[s] sharks and I’m not throwing them under the bus.” Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
She cautioned anyone thinking about swimming with sharks to know the risks. “I would recommend people to do it but be smart about it,” she said. “You are in their home,” she was quoted as saying. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram
Katarina is a 19-year-old college student who has been modeling since she was 14. She also blogs and shares travel and lifestyle tips on her Instagram, where she has over 13,000 followers. Photograph: @katarinazarutskie/Instagram