From our News Partners at WCBD-TV:
THONOTOSASSA, FL - It's a vacation two women visiting the Tampa Bay area from Ohio will never forget. Andrea Reese, 20, and her friend, Morgan Fusselman, were canoeing on the Hillsborough River at John Sergeant Park in Thonotosassa when Reese was bitten by an alligator.
Reese was treated and released from Tampa General Hospital at 7:16 p.m. Thursday.
“All of the sudden, she screamed and I saw an alligator half way on the boat. It grabbed her leg, after that I asked her if she could row. I called and there was a huge gash in her leg,” said Fusselman.
News Channel 8 spoke with Reese's family Thursday after the attack. They want to fly to Tampa to be with Reese.
“She was screaming and that was difficult but she's okay not a lot of blood was lost,” said Fusselman before getting into an ambulance with her friend.
Reese received non-life threatening injures and is expected to recover. Wildlife officers warn that alligators carry bacteria in their mouths that will require antibiotics.
The canoe company, Canoe Escape, where the women rented their boat from said they plan on returning to business as usual Friday.
“They informed me that this is just one of those freak accidents that can happen and that being open tomorrow and sending boats out, shouldn't be an issue,” said Michael Cole of Canoe Escape.
Photo Credit: Skinny Boy Shutterstock