After two days in a medically induced coma, NSW surfer Sam Morgan is “awake and well.” On Tuesday Morgan was surfing at Lighthouse Beach in Ballina, Australia when he was attacked by a 10-foot Bull Shark. He was rushed to a Gold Coast hospital where he was put under in order to safely recover from a large wound to his left thigh.
“He is happy to tell people that he is awake,” a hospital spokesman told the Gold Coast Bulletin.
The 20-year-old surfer was the 14th person to be attacked by a shark in New South Wales this year. After such a high rate of shark-on-human terror, community members have been pushing the government to do something about it. And it seemed that Morgan’s incident was the final straw – earlier this week, the Australian government approved a series of eco-friendly barriers to separate sharks from the swimmers and surfers in Ballina.
After Morgan’s hospitalization, however, local surfers like president of the local Le-Ba Boardriders Club Don Munro, say that it’s too little too late.
“I don’t know what it takes, it’s like a revolving door at the moment, it’s just going round and round,” said Munro. “Yes, we want that to happen now, we need that to happen now.”
The government has confirmed that the nets will be installed at Lighthouse Beach in the next couple months.
Whether or not Morgan will be able to surf or compete again is unclear; he had hopes of one day being a part of the elite World Surf League Tour. Despite the tragedy, Morgan has appeared to keep a positive attitude throughout it all. After the attack, his mother, Jenny Morgan, arrived as he was being put in the ambulance.
According to the Gold Coast Bulletin, one of Morgan’s friends who was at the scene said: “He was very pale in the face but he managed to sit up. She [Jenny] was bawling but he was able to stick his head up and call, ‘I’m all right mum, I’m all right mum.'”
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Sam Morgan and his family.