Shark attack on kitesurfer | CTV News

A PEI professional kitesurfer says he was seriously injured in a shark attack that occurred while snorkeling in the Turks and Caicos Islands last week.

In an Instagram post from the weekend, Lucas Arsenault shared a photo of himself in a hospital bed, apparently missing his lower right leg and with his left leg and forearm heavily bandaged.

In an accompanying caption, he said the injuries were the result of a shark attack while snorkeling with family and friends on Thursday.

“It was a shocking experience. I can’t express how lucky I am to be here,” he wrote. “This will present new challenges for me, but I am incredibly positive and grateful to be here and well to continue living my life to the fullest.”

Turks and Caicos Islands media reported that the Canadian was attacked off the island of Providenciales. The Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police said in a statement Friday that they had responded the previous day to a report of a 27-year-old man who was injured while snorkeling in Providenciales.

Police said he was taken ashore and rushed to Cheshire Hall Medical Center for treatment, and did not share further details Tuesday.

Arsenault did not respond to an emailed message Tuesday and asked for privacy in his social media post.

“Life can be fragile. Despite the terrible situation, I am incredibly lucky to still be here,” he said, vowing to adapt to his new situation.

“It is an obstacle in the way of this journey of life,” he wrote.

The kitesurfer is sponsored by Hawaii-based kitesurfing equipment company Cabrinha, which describes him as a freestyle champion who has lived on PEI his entire life. The company responded to his Instagram post, sending “positive vibes” and love to him and his family.

Arsenault appeared in a 2018 video by Cabrinha, made with the support of Prince Edward Island Tourism, highlighting the best kitesurfing spots on the island.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2024.

For more Prince Edward Island news, visit our dedicated provincial page.

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