A 14-year-old boy has tragically died after being stung by a box jellyfish with huge six feet-long tentacles.
The teen was enjoying a day out at the popular Eimeo Beach in Queensland, Australia before the fatal accident.
He reportedly emerged from the water at about 2:30p.m. on Saturday with more than six feet of tentacles wrapped around his arms and legs.
Witnesses rushed to perform CPR on the teenager after he went into cardiac arrest.
Police said the 14-year-old was taken to Mackay Base Hospital at 3:22p.m.
Paramedics resuscitated the teen for 40 minutes before he died in hospital, an hour after arrival.
Kirby Dash said she was at the beach celebrating her mother’s birthday when she saw the boy come out of the water.
She said she saw the teen stumble from waist-deep water with an “unreadable expression on his face” before managing to groan for help, reports the Daily Mercury.
“He had gone into shock,” she said.
“His legs were covered in tentacles.”
Dash said lifeguards and beachgoers rushed to the boy’s aid as parents screamed at their children to get out of the water.
A group of young men and Dash’s brother helped lifeguards give first aid while other bystanders offered water and towels.
Eimeo Surf Life Saving Club president Ross Gee said the teen was doused with 8 gallons of vinegar as the group tried to remove the stingers from his legs and hand.
“We were there as he exited the water, quickly after that he was semi-conscious,” he said.
Police said surf life saving crews had finished a net sweep for jellyfish on the beach just 15 minutes before the incident.
The beach will be closed for the rest of the weekend and residents have been told to stay out of the water.
The tragedy is the third box jellyfish fatality since 2006, when a 17-year-old was stung near Cape York in Queensland’s far north in February last year.
Box Jellyfish are named after their distinctive shape and can be known as sea wasps.
They have deadly tentacles covered with tiny poison darts which can be lethal to humans and animals.
The poison acts quickly and can lead to paralysis, cardiac arrest, or even death, all within a few minutes of being stung.
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