Man airlifted to hospital after Cape Cod shark attack

The 61-year-old victim suffered puncture wounds to his torso and legs and was helped to shore by dozens of bystanders at the beach.
1:54 | 08/16/18

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Transcript for Man airlifted to hospital after Cape Cod shark attack
unsettling moment right here in the northeast. A shark attacking a 61-year-old man on cape cod, shutting down the beach. Swimmers were returned ashore. T.J. Holmes is in Massachusetts with the very latest. Reporter: We know that hundreds of sharks flock to these cape cod waters every summer, about the same time we do, people do. It's not a matter of if but when somebody was going to get hurt. Chaos at the beach in cape cod. Subject possibly bitten by a shark in the thigh. Reporter: A man who says he was swimming just 30 feet offshore was bitten by a shark, suffering punk tour wounds to his torso and legs. A news helicopter captured an image of this shark just hours later. My procedure said someone had been attacked by a shark. We just graduated from Boston college's nursing school so we were like, okay, let's go. Reporter: His life was saved thanks to bystanders at the beach who rushed in to help, carrying him up this hill where paramedics raced him to a nearby hospital. He had a large wound in his lower left leg. So we grabbed all the towels that we could, put them on, stop the bleeding. Reporter: Several shark sightings have been reported in the area in recent days. Experts believe it's due to an increase in seals or shark food near the cape. Last week a great white jumped out of the water, lunging at this scientist. Did you see that! Reporter: Just last month two separate incidents on New York's fire island on the same day five miles away left two children with shark bites to their legs. Despite the headlines, we don't see evidence of a spike in shark encounters around the country over the past several years. Also, David, there hasn't been a shark encounter here in cape cod since 2012 but those numbers aren't any comfort less than 24 hours after someone was bitten by a shark. Important for swimmers to be aware. T.J., thanks.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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