Great white sharks are some of the deadliest serial killers of the sea. Here are the most horrific great white shark attacks on humans!
Also known as the “white death,” this animal has been described as a “ferocious man eater.” Not only is it responsible for the most shark attacks on humans, but it’s even capable sinking boats. It’s the one & only, great white shark. In this special episode, we’ll be showcasing not only the worst great white shark attacks in history, but also more detailed information about this underwater beast as well as how to survive an attack. Here we present to you They Will Kill You: When Great White Sharks Attack.
What is It?
Reaching up to 26 feet long & over 7,300 pounds, great white sharks are the largest living predatory fish in the world. Its deadly jaw contains a total of 300 sharp, triangular teeth with jagged edges that, if broken, are easily replaced with a new tooth that grows in. They’re known for their highly aggressive nature. Once they bite into your flesh, they’ll shake their head from side-to-side in order to tear off your flesh or even an entire limb. Great white sharks have no natural predators in the wild aside from orcas, making them one of the deadliest shark species on the planet. They’re responsible for a whopping 272 unprovoked attacks on humans. The great white was, in fact, the same shark species exhibited in Steven Spielberg’s 1975 film Jaws.
6: Rodney Fox
Hailing from Adelaide, Australia is Rodney Fox who—by 1962—became South Australia’s spearfishing champion. But while defending his title in 1963, Fox was torn apart by a great white shark 50 kilometers off the coast of South Adelaide’s Aldinga Beach. The attack managed to penetrate his diaphragm, break every single left-side rib, shred his lungs open, tear open his abdomen, expose his artery & spleen, & severe his scapula. But despite all these injuries & losing a massive amount of blood in such a short period of time, he survived. This was considered by many to be nothing short of a miracle. There was also a shark tooth buried in his wrist, which had ripped the tendons of his right hand’s fingers & thumb. He required 92 stitches on his right hand & arm along with 462 stitches on his chest. The mauling left him in rehab for almost a year.
But Fox managed to return to the spearfishing championships in Victoria on the one-year anniversary of the attack. Along with his many connections in the spearfishing world, he studied sharks further & eventually started an underwater observation program of great white sharks to prove that their motive isn’t actually to eat humans. He also went on to help build the first underwater observatory cage for shark expeditions in order to provide people with learning opportunities about these underwater beasts. Rodney Fox went on to write a book titled “Sharks, the Sea and Me,” in which he goes into a detailed account of the deadly event.
Where is It Located?
Great white sharks are predominantly found in the Pacific, Atlantic, & Indian Oceans. However, they’re known to travel all over the world & love warm waters. The majority of attacks on humans occur along the coastal areas of the United States, Australia, & Africa.
5: Randy Fry
August, 2004: Randall Fry’s life is taken by a great white shark off Southern California’s Mendocino Coast. Fry was a regular fisherman of Mendocino County, with close friends in Albion & Fort Bragg who were also in the same fishing committee. But one Sunday afternoon, Fry & his two friends (Cliff & Red) decided to go diving & fishing for abalone & salmon. Cliff & Fry were very familiar with these waters, as the two had spent the last 30 years around them. They went off hunting for salmon in Cliff’s 28-foot sport fishing boat, but didn’t catch much. They then moved towards the Kibesillah Rock in search of abalones. Fry & Cliff swam out about 150 feet from the boat while Red stayed aboard. After 10 to 15 minutes in the water, Cliff felt something large swim by. The next thing he saw was ruckus in the water followed by a pool of blood. He screamed “Holy Shit, Shark!” then quickly swam for safety back to the boat. In the meantime, Fry was nowhere to be found. Coastguards searched the area for two hours that same day. But it wasn’t until the day after that Fry’s body was found, which could only be identified by the camouflage-print wetsuit he had on as there was no longer a face to be recognized. He was instantly killed when the great white shark separated his head from his torso. Attacks of this nature were rare in Mendocino & as such, Randy Fry’s death shook the California coast’s fishing communities.
How Will It Kill You?
Great white sharks can reach speeds of up to 25 mph per hour & are even capable of jumping out of water. They have one of the most powerful bites in the animal kingdom, making them the ultimate killing machine. The bigger the shark, the more likely your death will follow as one bite from a great white could be enough to tear you in half. But if you’re lucky enough to escape in one piece then you’ll be at a high risk of bleeding or drowning to death, as the majority of attacks involve tearing off a piece of your flesh or ripping off an entire limb.
4: Terry Manuel
January, 1974: 26-year-old Terry Manuel is severely bitten by a ten-foot long great white shark in Streaky Bay, 450 miles south of Adelaide. Terry & his friend John were out on a boat diving for abalone, with Terry being the diver while John stayed on the boat to wait for Terry to resurface with the abalones. But upon his rise to the surface about 150 feet from the boat, a shark was spotted & John hurriedly drove the boat near Terry, who wasn’t able to see the fish suddenly charge up to him. The great white’s force was so strong, it sent him flying out of the water. John did what he could to prevent the shark from taking Terry underwater by grabbing his air hose in an attempt to pull him up. One of Terry’s legs was caught by the shark’s jaw while at the same time, John was battling to bring Terry up to the boat. The shark eventually let go, all the while taking Terry’s right leg along with it. He was finally pulled up to the boat but was bleeding profusely. He bled to death within moments. John was later interviewed, stating: “I looked to see if I could apply a tourniquet, but his leg was gone. The leg was completely bitten off at the top of the thigh and his right arm had been mauled between the elbow and the wrist. His chest and back was also bleeding.” The incident consequently left many abalone divers of Adelaide’s south coast area scared for their lives, causing many to temporarily leave their diving professions.
How to Survive:
What most people don’t know is that the majority of great white shark bites are simply “test-bites” in which they bite a swimmer or surfer in order to test out exactly what is it, which they then release in most cases as the human bone to muscle & fat ratio is too high for the shark to digest. There have been instances in history where the great white shark consumed its entire victim, as you will learn about shortly; although these cases are rare. In order to prevent an attack, avoid entering the water around dusk or dawn. Do not wear bright colors, as these are known to attract the beast. If you find yourself in a situation where there’s a great white shark in close proximity, stay calm & keep an eye on it until you can leave the water. And if you find yourself under attack, you can defend yourself by attacking its eyes & gills, which are the most sensitive parts of its body.
3: Shirley Durdin
1985: 33-year-old housewife Shirley Ann Durdin is eaten alive by a great white shark in front of an entire crowd at Wiseman’s Beach, Australia. Shirley was recreationally snorkeling while at the same time, scanning for some scallops. Her husband Barry—along with another friend Keith—had just finished accompanying Shirley & already moved closer to shore. She was standing about 150 yards from shore in six-foot shallow water when out of nowhere, a great white jerked out of the water, biting off both her legs in the first round of attack. The second round came nearly seconds after; this time with the shark consuming Shirley whole. Barry attempted to go back to save his wife but was held back by Keith. The families were waiting on shore & witnessed the entire incident as it occurred. Her husband yelled, “She’s gone! She’s gone!” after only a red pool remained in the same spot she stood just a minute ago. Retired fisherman Kevin Wiseman—who said he witnessed the whole attack—confirmed that it was a 19-foot long great white. This was Australia’s first case in which a shark ate a human whole instead of just taking a bite & swimming away.
2: Lewis Boren
December 19th, 1981: surfer Lewis Boren is attacked by one of the biggest great white sharks ever recorded. Boren was a kneeboard surfer who decided to take his board out to Asilomar State Beach near Monterrey, California. With waves as high as 15-feet tall, Boren swam out into the bay while his friends left him alone to go have lunch; but they never saw Boren again.
His board wasn’t discovered until the very next day, but with a giant chunk missing & some blood stains on it. It wasn’t until Christmas Eve that his body was finally discovered by a park ranger. The Monterey County Sheriff’s Department stated that he had “great trauma to the left side, from the armpit down to approximately the hip.” After examinations, experts were able to tell from the size of the bite that the great white was around 20-feet long & weighted two tons, making it the second-biggest great white ever discovered in the history of the California coast. Coroner reports state that the shark approached Boren from the left side & ended up biting both the board & a chunk of his body, which was completely mangled in the wetsuit & caused him to die in the ocean. Lewis’s death made headlines throughout the nation; even appearing on the cover of Rolling Stones magazine for one month.
1: Lloyd Skinner
2010: an engineer named Lloyd Skinner is devoured in front of a crowd of holiday-goers at Cape Town’s most popular beach. Skinner was 37-years-old at the time & on vacation from Zimbabwe. While standing in the water to cool down from the 90º heat, the water around him began rippling. Towels were waved to get Skinner’s attention & let him know something strange was happening. At that point, a great white shark swiftly pulled him under the waves. Then the water turned red. He was able to resurface, but it was only a few seconds later that the beast came back around & pulled him underwater once more. No one saw Skinner again after that last struggle. Eyewitness Gregg Coppen—who saw the attack unfold step-by-step from his beachfront home—told news reporters: “We just saw a gigantic shark eat what looked like a person in front of our house! That shark was huge! Like dinosaur huge!” He further explained that “it was this giant shadow, it sort of came out of the water and took this colorful lump and went off with it. You could see its whole jaw wrap around the thing which turned out to be a person.” Others recall it being as large as a bus. British tourists who were also present were traumatized after witnessing the event. “We saw the shark come back twice,” said Phyllis McCartain of Sussex, England. “It had the man’s body in its mouth and his arm was in the air. Then the sea was full of blood.” Another tourist named Kyle Johnston added, “We were at about chest depth and he was deeper. We saw people waving towels at us, then we looked further out to sea and saw what looked like blood, and a man’s legs come up.” Authorities laters circled the water in helicopters hoping to find Lloyd Skinner’s remains, but they were never to be found of ever again.