Western Angler (www.westernangler.com.au), 22nd Sept 2011
The following information is from a blog on Western Angler. Shark Shield has also been made aware of this event by several other sources who have spoken directly to Geoff & his wife.
Geoff had just bought some new dive gear and wanted to test it out prior to the cray season. Both Geoff and his wife took their 7 mtr ally boat to Busselton (Western Australia) where they launched and headed to a calm patch of water in Meelup Bay. This was about 1 week after the body boarder got taken at Bunkers. This was also Geoff’s wife’s first boat dive.
They had enjoyed some time on the bottom when they decided to ascend to the surface from around 12 mtrs down. They were near the boat and Geoff was several metres’ ahead of his wife heading towards the transom.
Before getting on to the boat Geoff looked back at his wife and saw what he thought was a whale heading towards her. It instantly became apparent it was a massive white pointer as it came directly up to Geoff’s wife and stopped level with her, 3 metres away.
Geoff’s wife had a very clear view of the front of the shark and described how she could see every little wrinkle cut and ripple in its huge face.
After what must have seemed like an eternity the shark dropped to the bottom and at the same time Geoff made contact with his wife and he pulled her back to the transom.
As he was helping her to the back of the boat the white who was now on the bottom and directly underneath them, went from cruise mode to all ahead engines, in a split second it finned hard and arched up coming directly at them both with no sign of stopping.
At that point Geoff thought this was his last moments and was in disbelief thinking this is it, this how I’m going to die. As he watched the shark move in he realised that there was nothing left to do, at the last moment the great white hit the brakes and shook its head side to side like a person does as they walk into an unseen spider web.
The white then veered off and pushed into the blue. Not believing his luck Geoff got his wife on the transom but could not get up himself because she was blocking the way.
There was a certain amount of directness in his voice when he asked her to move into the boat. She was frozen and simply could not move. Geoff with a full kit of scuba gear pulled himself up over the transom and his wife and fell into the boat backwards. As he reached over to bring his wife in, the white cruised under the transom and hung around the boat for a few more moments.
Geoff also explained he had a Shark Shield on and is in no doubt that at the moment of pause that is what saved his life.
His wife did not have a shield and this may explain why the white sized her up and set up an attack from the bottom.
What the white didn’t bank on was the shield that now enveloped Geoff and his wife.
Geoff didn’t make the footage public out of respect for the very recent sad event that took place a few days earlier. He did call the police and after they got into the boat they headed towards the shore and warned nearby paddlers and swimmers.