Stab Magazine | Surfer Stung In The Face By Stingray in West Oz
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Surfer Stung In The Face By Stingray in West Oz

“I looked down at myself and I had a black wetsuit on, but it was just red…”

news // Aug 4, 2019
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Stingrays are one the ocean’s more underrated threats. As surfers we’re too pre-occupied with the unlikely chance of having our limbs torn off by a bull shark, or the more pressing but less deadly fear of having an 8-foot bomb land square on our heads. Among all that we have latent phobias of being decapitated by a foil, or even worse, dropped in on by a Brazilian backpacker. But not too often do we consider the humble stingray and their bacteria-ridden barbs. 

At the start of the year, a surf instructor at Bondi was assaulted by a stingray which put him out of the water for three months and almost cost him his leg – he got necrotising fasciitis from the barb, a deadly bacterial infection. Now, last weekend at a Perth beachie, a man copped a stingray slash to the face. 

Duckdiving a wave amidst an abundance of seaweed, the WA surfer and dad, James Taylor, received a quick slash to the face. “I just felt a massive slash on my cheek and once I came up, I just saw the blood,” he told Nine News. It felt like something had slashed me, I didn’t even think about stingrays. I looked down at myself and I had a black wetsuit on, but it was just red (with blood). I had a quick shower and there was just red everywhere.”

Of course, James was lucky the stingray didn’t get him in the eye – which would’ve blinded him – or worse, struck him in the neck which would’ve likely been fatal. Thankfully, he’s fine and says the quick whack to the face won’t keep him out of the water for long. He underwent plastic surgery during the week to minimise the aesthetic damage and will hopefully be back in the water within the coming months. 

And before you comment ‘slow new days?’ down below like a number of you did on my last half-arsed stingray article, go and watch the Huntington highlights and tell me this clickbait isn’t more exciting. 

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