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LUCKY ESCAPE! Teen attacked by great white shark saved by quick-thinking friend

Luke Pascoe, 17, was spearfishing when blood from the fish he had harpooned attracted the great white
UPDATED AUG 16, 2022
Luke Pascoe was attacked by a great white shark while spearfishing (photos from Allen Galiza/Getty Images and Luke Pascoe/facebook)
Luke Pascoe was attacked by a great white shark while spearfishing (photos from Allen Galiza/Getty Images and Luke Pascoe/facebook)

ALBANY, AUSTRALIA: A teen was mauled by a sixteen-feet long great white shark, which left chunks hanging out of his legs in Western Australia.

Luke Pascoe, 17, was spearfishing off Goode Beach, near Mistaken Island in the southern WA town of Albany on Monday when he found himself stuck in the deadly jaws of the great white shark. The teen had harpooned a fish in the 10-meter deep water and was swimming towards the surface, but the blood from the fish in his spear caught the attention of the mighty shark.


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The shark was trying to swipe the teen’s fish but ended up taking out a whole chunk of his leg. While Luke was screaming in pain in the water, his quick-thinking mate Conner Shirley created a makeshift tourniquet and tapped into his first aid knowledge to use his dive belt to stop the bleeding.

"Conner was the one that helped me up onto the rock and he piggybacked me 2km along the rocks back to the car and drove me to hospital," Luke told the ABC.

"I owe my life to him. I was lying in bed last night and I was thinking to myself how lucky I am to still be here," he added. The jaws of the great white shark caused three lacerations to his lower legs.

Speaking from Albany Health Campus on Tuesday, Luke said he didn’t feel the pain and was now focused on his rehabilitation. He further said he understands the risk involved with spearfishing and will work to make people aware of it. "It's more my fault than the shark's fault," he told the ABC.

The attack on Luke came amid a rise in shark attacks in Australian waters. Earlier this year, a swimmer was wedged by a 3.5 metre great white shark when he was swimming 50 meters offshore from Melros Beach in Perth's south; but he managed to escape the deadly jaws with his quick thinking.

Responding to the rise in shark attacks, animal welfare expert Lawrence Chlebuck said most of the shark attacks on humans are the result of humans thinking of them as seals. As of August, 57 shark attacks have been recorded across the globe in 2022, says a report by Tracking Shark.

"Normally they bite something to figure out what it is," Chlebuck said. "Once they realise it's a person and not a normal prey item, they take off. The vast majority of shark bites are a 'one and done' occurrence."

"They are still trying to figure out their changing diet as they switch from fish, as young sharks, to seals and marine mammals," he said. "Great white sharks are obviously large predators that expend a lot of energy so they need a lot of high-energy food and the blubber of a seal is perfect for that," the expert added.