TAMPA, Fla. — Early Friday morning a bicyclist stopped to help a raccoon that was hit by a car when the animal became aggressive and appeared to bite the individual.
The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County is asking for help identifying the person bitten. It happened on Silver Oak Lane off of 78 Street in the Palm River area. So far all attempts to locate the individual have been unsuccessful.
Officials stress that the person bitten should seek immediate medical attention since raccoons are known carries of rabies. Rabies is preventable if medical attention is received, but otherwise it's almost always fatal. They advise people to avoid all contact with any wildlife or unknown animal.
The only way to know if an animal has rabies is through a laboratory exam. People who have been bitten or scratched by a wild or domestic animal should seek immediate medical attention.
For more information on rabies you can visit FloridaHealth.gov.