Surfer Fatally Mauled by Shark 'in the Blink of an Eye'

Police are now hunting for body of man off coast of South Australia after Tuesday attack
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 1, 2023 7:21 AM CDT
Surfer Fatally Mauled by Shark 'in the Blink of an Eye'
Stock photo of a shark in the water.   (Getty Images/Alessandro De Maddalena)

A surfboard with a bite mark is all that remained after a surfer off of South Australia's Eyre Peninsula was dragged under the water Tuesday by what witnesses believe was a great white shark. Police confirm they're now looking for the 55-year-old man's body, per 7NEWS, which notes that up to a dozen other surfers were with him in the water when the shark struck. The creature "grabbed him, pulled him back down, brought him back up, pulled him back down again," one witness says.

The attack by the shark, which witnesses say was about 13 feet long, was "swift and savage," one local reporter noted, with the man surfing at Granite Rock near Streaky Bay dragged under "in the blink of an eye," per "Blood everywhere and then up pops the board," witness Ian Brophy tells the Advertiser, via the Daily Beast. "I saw him in the wave and the shark had his body in his mouth. It was pretty gruesome." Brophy adds: "Sixty years of surfing and I've never seen anything like that before in my life."

Another witness described the shark as a "f---ing monster." 7NEWS reports that a person on a Jet Ski ended up chasing the shark away from the shore, though it was too late to save the surfer. The BBC notes this is the third shark attack in South Australia this year, and that waters off the state's west coast "are well known for the presence of sharks." Although the search for the man's body was temporarily called off Tuesday due to poor conditions, police say it will pick up again Wednesday and continue through the weekend if need be. (More great white shark stories.)

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