Alligator attack victims share terrifying experience

The Hurley family was out for a swim at Lake Charlotte in Wallisville on Sunday when the father and son were bitten by an alligator. On Friday, the father was discharged from the hospital and shared his experience.

James Hurley says his 13-year-old son was swimming when he was suddenly dragged below.

"All of a sudden, my oldest boy Kaleb said 'Mom, something's got a hold of me!' and he went underwater," said James Hurley.

An alligator that they estimated was at least 10 feet had bitten his arm and leg.

"Kaleb's arm was open, gashed open. I see that...I was scared he was going to lose his arm," said Mark Ford, Kaleb's grandfather.

The dad jumped in to pull Kaleb out, and just as the dad was getting out himself, the alligator chomped down on his leg.

"The only thing it felt like -- just like I told everybody else -- like a sledgehammer, with a bunch of needles, like somebody laid my leg over and hit it 20 times with a sledgehammer," said Hurley.

He was able to kick the alligator away and get to shore, but he ended up with seven puncture wounds and a broken bone.

Both father and son were taken by Life Flight medical helicopter to Memorial Hermann Texas Trauma Institute and the Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital where they're expected to fully heal.

Doctors at Memorial Hermann say if you ever find yourself the victim of an alligator attack, to remember to stop the bleeding as best you can.

"With bleeding control, the best thing to do is direct pressure first and if direct pressure is not enough, then sometimes you have to take your belt off, take a piece of fabric, and wrap it above the limb and tie it down as tight as you can to stop the bleeding," said Dr. Sam Prater of Memorial Hermann Texas Trauma Institute Emergency Services.

Wildlife officials said this is the nesting period for alligators and that because of the heavy storms and flooding recently, alligators have been displaced and may pop up in places where you normally wouldn't find them.