On July 9, 2023, a SIPOA resident doing yard work on his property adjacent to the golf course was attacked by an alligator living in a lagoon nearby. While the Property Owner was walking 6-8 feet from the lagoon edge, the alligator quickly emerged from the lagoon, knocked the Owner to the ground, and clenched the Owner’s leg in his jaws. Fortunately, the alligator relaxed its grip, and the Owner was able to escape to safety. The alligator returned to the lagoon.
The Owner contacted 911. SIPOA officers and EMS responded. The Owner was transported by EMS and his injuries were treated at MUSC. During that time the Charleston County Sheriff, SCDNR, an alligator trapper and SIPOA officers were on site. The alligator was captured and transported.
This was a terrifying and rare alligator encounter with a surprisingly fortunate outcome thanks to the Owner’s quick thinking. As we know, not everyone in similar situations is this lucky.
SIPOA publishes alligator safety reminders on a regular basis from early spring through fall. We would like to take this opportunity to again remind our Owners and their guests to be aware of alligators, and actions to take should they encounter one.
Alligators less than four feet long are incapable of eating anything larger than a small turtle and are too small to pose a threat to even small pets or people. Alligators at least four feet in length that are aggressive and pose a threat to people, pets or property are considered “nuisance alligators”.
FOR YOUR SAFETY:
If you have a concern about an aggressive or nuisance alligator on SIPOA properties or roadways or at your residence, call the Gatehouse at (843) 768-6641. SIPOA will contact our on-call professional alligator trapper licensed by SCDNR to evaluate the alligator which then may be removed and euthanized. If you are on the golf course, contact the golf shop or Sean Hardwick at the Seabrook Island Club for assistance.
In any location, if you are attacked by an alligator or you observe an attack, call 911 for emergency response. Don’t waste valuable response time by calling the Gatehouse – 911 should be your first call for any emergency. When 911 is called, the Gatehouse is automatically notified by Charleston County and can respond as needed.
Again, we are fortunate that this didn’t become a tragic event. We are very thankful that our resident escaped, and injuries were minor. Please keep these safety precautions in mind when outdoors. Be Aware, Be Alert and Stay Safe!
The town was recently notified by its beach patrol provider, Island Beach Services, of an incident that took place in the Atlantic Ocean off of Seabrook Island.
At approximately 8:00 pm on Sunday, June 6th, 911 received a call regarding a young female who had been bitten in the water near boardwalk #2. Charleston County EMS and St. Johns Fire District were immediately dispatched, and Island Beach Services was notified shortly thereafter. As the town’s beach patrol had concluded for the day, a beach patrol officer was dispatched to the scene from the contractor’s headquarters on Kiawah Island. The beach patrol officer arrived at the scene and was able to assist with transporting the patient from the beach to the ambulance.
The patient was subsequently transported by EMS to a local emergency room where she was treated for minor injuries consistent with a shark bite.
While the likelihood of being bitten by a shark is very small, there are several steps that beachgoers can take to reduce the odds of an unwelcome shark encounter:
As we move into the busy summer months, it’s important to remember that the waters of Seabrook Island are home to a variety of wildlife, including Bonnethead, Atlantic sharpnose and Black-tipped sharks; stingrays; and various types of jellyfish. Beachgoers should always exercise caution when entering the water. In the event of a bite, sting or other emergency, dial 911 for medical assistance.