INJURED — 13 August 2006 — Muizenberg, Cape Town, South Africa — lifeguard attacked

Lifeguard Achmat Hassiem, 24, had his foot bitten off, by what is believed to be a Great White while doing lifeguard training about 200 metres from shore at Sunrise Beach, Muizenberg, False Bay, Cape Town, South Africa.

The attack occurred around 11am on Sunday 13 August.

According to media reports Hassiem was training with other lifeguards including his brother Taariq, 17.

They were alone together in deep water, acting as “patients” for three lifesavers in a boat, when Achmat saw the shark heading for Taariq.

Media reports quoted Taariq as saying his brother was the first to see the shark and shouted: “Taariq shark!”

Taariq was hauled into the lifesavers boat, then the shark headed for Achmat, who disappeared beneath the water.

Seeing a dark patch, Taariq reached in to grab his brother, not knowing if the shark would bite him.

Taariq said that Achmat was pulled into the boat, his leg “dripping with blood”, but instead of swimming away, “the shark actually turned around and came for us again”.

“It actually knocked the boat quite hard, but there were five of us so it couldn’t knock it over.”

They got Achmat ashore where he was treated by lifesaver medics who controlled the bleeding, elevated his leg and stabilised his condition.

Achmat was airlifted to Constantiaberg Medi-Clinic by Metro Red Cross AMS helicopter.

Hospital officials said he was recovering in ICU after surgery and was in a stable condition.

False Bay is renowned as a Great White breeding ground. On 28 July a lifeguard’s surf-ski was attacked by 3.5-4 metre Great White in False Bay.


Pic Credit:
Steve Pike, Wavescape

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