Saturday, 15 May 2021

Heroic husband saves wife from great white shark with flurry of punches

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A surfer was saved from a shark attack after her husband jumped on the beast’s back and fought it off.

Chantelle Doyle, 35, was mauled at Shelly Beach in Port Macquarie, New South Wales, Australia, around 9.30am local time on Saturday.

The great white shark targeted her right calf and the back of her thigh before hubby Mark Rapley stepped in.

He repeatedly punched the shark, a juvenile measuring 2-3 metres, which eventually let her go.

Mrs Doyle was taken to hospital with significant lacerations to her right leg.

She underwent surgery at the John Hunter Hospital in Newcastle and remains in a stable condition.

Lifeguards at Port Macquarie have closed beaches in the area following the attack.

Surf Life Saving NSW chief executive Steven Pearce told the Australian Associated Press: “The shark wouldn't release her and so a nearby surfer paddled over and essentially jumped on the shark and started hitting it to make it release.”

He described it as a “tremendous act of bravery”.

Mr Pearce added: “We've had some really serious and tragic shark encounters over the past couple of months along the NSW coastline so to paddle out of your own safety zone, in to an area where you know there is a large shark, I think is amazing.”

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He is now urging surfers to be “shark smart” in dangerous waters.

Mr Pearce said: “As we've seen this morning, there are occasions where people can be shark smart and they think they're doing all the right things, but unfortunately, they're just in that wrong place at the wrong time.”

Officials will search the waters with jet skis and drones to confirm if the shark was still nearby.

There will also be “heightened vigilance” of sharks along the New South Wales coast in September, with 400 lifesavers set to pilot drones across 40 locations.

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There have been five fatal shark attacks in Australia in 2020.

Last month, 15-year-old student Mani Hart-Deville was killed at Wooli Beach in New South Wales.

He was left with severe injuries to his leg and several other surfers came to his aid.

Paramedics attempted CPR but the boy was tragically pronounced dead at the scene.

  • Great White Shark
  • Sharks

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