Golfer loses arm to alligator in South Carolina

12 Oct 2009 07:58

A 77-year-old man has been hospitalised in Charleston, South Carolina, after an alligator bit off his arm during a round of golf.

James Wiencek was said to be in a 'stable' condition on Sunday after a 10-foot, 400-pound alligator attacked him close to a lagoon at the Ocean Creek Golf Course in Beaufort as he leant down to pick up his ball.

The incident occured on Thursday, whereupon Mr Wiencek was taken to hospital along with his severed arm in the hope doctors could reattach it.

The arm was retrieved after wildlife officials killed the alligator.

A spokesman from the Medical University of South Carolina said she could not release any information on the patient, but officials at Fripp Island confirmed they had heard from Mr Wiencek's son - who told them his father was in a stable condition.

It remains unclear whether an operation to reattach the man's arm was successful.

Joe Maffo, an alligator removal specialist, told the The Island Packet newspaper: ""It could have been a mother protecting her brood, this alligator may have been fed before by people or it could have been a dominance thing and the alligator felt he was trespassing.

"These kinds of attacks are very, very unusual and very, very unfortunate."

- Golf.co.uk staff