Tom’s Surf Break: surfers have close encounter with shark

Surf photographer Rick Knoppert captures the moment when a 3.5 metre shark drifted among surfers on Sunday.
Tom’s Surf Break: surfers have close encounter with shark
Tom’s Surf Break: surfers have close encounter with shark
Tom’s Surf Break: surfers have close encounter with shark
Tom’s Surf Break: surfers have close encounter with shark
Surf photographer Rick Knoppert captures the moment when a 3.5 metre shark drifted among surfers on Sunday.

IN “10 minutes of excitement and adrenaline” local surf photographer Rick Knoppert snapped surfers in a close encounter with a 3.5-metre shark at Mettam’s Pool and Tom’s Surf Break on Sunday.

“I saw the guys making a beeline for the beach; everyone started pointing towards the water and I started scanning the water,” he said.

“Everybody was shaking; we reckon it was at least 3.5m long. I’m no shark expert but judging by what we saw it had to be at least that.

“It’s probably a bronze whaler that has been hanging around hunting fish.

“The surf wasn’t very good so that was a real adrenaline rush for the surfers.”

Mr Knoppert said the photo from his photographer Facebook page had already reached 45,000 people and counting.

“I’m glad that nobody was hurt, but it was a real adrenaline rush to get those photos, I was lucky to get the shots,” he said.

The self-proclaimed ocean lover said he did not see sharks as a huge risk to the community.

“Sharks are always there, we choose to do our sport in their home and I think the fact that people make such a big deal and they want to cull them is ridiculous,” he said.

“We don’t go around culling humans for causing mayhem for killing people on the roads; the odd shark that happens to take someone we make more fuss of that than all the carnage on the roads everyday.

“There are a lot worse things happening in the world today, sharks are really the least of our worries.”

Authorities had issued a shark warning for Tom’s Surf Break at North Beach on July 22.

“Department of Fisheries is continuing to closely monitor the situation,” the alert said.

If you see a shark, report it to Water Police on 9442 8600.

All shark sighting information reported to Water Police is provided to response agencies and to the public on the SharkSmart website and Surf Life Saving WA Twitter feed.

See more here.