Abalone diver survives shark attack Published: 23 January, 2007
AN Australian abalone diver has survived a terrifying attack by a great white shark, which swallowed his head and shoulders before he fought free of the predator.
According to Australian news site The Age, Eric Nerhus, 41, was diving off the New South Wales south coast on Tuesday when the three-metre shark seized him head on, crunching on his head, shoulders and chest.
Protected from the worst of the shark’s bite by a lead-lined weight vest, the diver stabbed and clubbed at the creature’s head and eyes with an abalone chisel until it spat him free.
The shark’s bite crushed Mr Nerhus’s reinforced face mask, broke his nose, and shredded his wetsuit.
With blood pouring from deep wounds to his head, chest and back, Mr Nerhus surfaced off Cape Howe, near Eden, to be pulled aboard a boat by his son Mark, 25.
Suffering blood loss and shock, he was flown to Wollongong Hospital, where he was stable and conscious on Tuesday night, telling friends of his miraculous escape.