She Was Kayaking, Then a 'Big Bang'

Sarah Williams, her dad recount frightening experience in Australia
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 23, 2017 10:15 AM CDT
10 More Seconds and Great White May Have Gotten Her
Stock photo of a great white shark.   (Getty Images)

It was "everything you picture in the Jaws movie," minus the bloody death. A 15-year-old Australian teen relates her harrowing encounter with what's believed to have been a great white shark on Sunday. ABC reports Sarah Williams was fishing for squid in a kayak off the Normanville area of South Australia when a shark surfaced from underneath her kayak, tossing her into the air and out of the boat. Dad Chris Williams describes it to 9News as a "big bang," with something "very solid" hitting her kayak. He was about 100 feet away in a small aluminum boat with his son; his wife and her friend were in a kayak about three times that distance away. "We could see the shark still there and having a go at her," says Williams.

The Australian quotes him as saying Sarah managed to "[clamber] onto the kayak" as the shark continued to go at the vessel. As Williams started the motor and did a U-turn toward Sarah, he instructed his son to pull his sister into their boat. He did so with just seconds to spare, reckons Williams. "The difference between my daughter being alive and not being with me today is 10 seconds," he says, expressing how shaken he still is by his daughter's "spine-chilling screams." His son says the shark was as long as the kayak, leading to estimates that it was about 15 feet long. Sarah suffered only scratches and bruises. (This fisherman nearly died after a freak accident involving a much smaller creature.)

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