Jordan Rivera, Engelwood, Florida man survives alligator attack after predator bites off right arm after going to use pond as queue to use restroom at bar was too long.
‘It’s not the end of the world.’ A 23 year old man who left a Florida bar to use a nearby pond on account of the bathroom queue being too long had his right arm bitten off in an alligator attack.
Jordan Rivera fell into the water behind Banditos bar in Port Charlotte in the early hours of Sunday. Rivera was heard screaming for help after the beast had chomped down on his right arm.
Patrons immediately ran from inside the bar to rescue him, pulling him out of the water and creating a makeshift tourniquet on his severed arm, NBC 2 reported.
‘The next thing I know I open my eyes and I’m in hospital without my right arm’
From his ICU hospital bed in Fort Myers, Rivera told the outlet: ‘I didn’t lose my life, I lost an arm, it’s not the end of the world.’
The man’s mother Teresa Lessa said: ‘I call them angels, that were there, that saved his life. The chance of someone being there with a tourniquet, to me, it’s a miracle that he’s here.’
‘The first thing I would do is shake the man’s hand,’ Rivera told NBC2.
Witness Manny Hidalgo, who came to the rescue, said: ‘He was yelling and swimming toward the shoreline.
‘I ran and dragged him up onto the sand. I was scared to get close to the water because it was dark out.
‘I don’t know if it was a mama gator trying to save her young, or a daddy gator trying to feed his family … but the guy was very lucky,’ he told The Daily Sun.
Rivera, from Englewood, was airlifted to Gulf Coast Hospital in Fort Myers, where his arm could not be saved and was then amputated, said Todd Dunn for Charlotte County Fire and EMS.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) said a nuisance alligator trapper removed the 10.5-foot alligator from the property. The predator was then euthanized.
Of the attack Rivera said he barely remembers anything.
He explained that because the bathroom queue at Banditos was so long, he decided to relieve himself by the pond nearby – where alligators are known to lurk.
‘As I was going over there something happened where I either tripped or the ground below me just went down. I ended up in the water. And that’s literally the last thing I remember.’
The next time he opened his eyes, he was in the hospital with an amputated arm.
Chance of unprovoked alligator attack one in 3.1million
‘It was just the craziest thing. It’s almost out of a movie,’ he said.
It was reported that doctors are yet to perform another procedure on Mr Rivera to ensure his arm is free of bacteria passed onto him by the beast’s teeth.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) officials warn of the dangers of alligator attacks as the beasts become more visible and active during spring and summer.
They also warn those who live in Florida to always be mindful FWC when they are near any body of water.
Florida has a population of 1.3 million alligators across its 67 counties, and they can be found in practically all fresh water bodies and occasionally in salt water.
But the number of cases of people being attacked by alligators in the state is small.
From 1948 to 2021, 442 unprovoked bite incidents have occurred in Florida, 26 of which resulted in human fatalities.
Over the past ten years, Florida has averaged eight unprovoked bites per year that are serious enough to require professional medical treatment, The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says on its website.
‘The likelihood of a Florida resident being seriously injured during an unprovoked alligator incident in Florida is roughly only one in 3.1million,’ it said.