Avoid splashing, kicking, or thrashing about in panic, as this may encourage the shark to attack. ", It doesn't matter the size of the fishing operation either. Sometimes they swim right up and charge, sometimes they circle for a while before lunging, and sometimes they sneak up from behind for a surprise attack. If you have been bitten and if you are bleeding after the bite, try and keep that area out of the water. If you are bleeding, avoid going in the water. If you have a fishing spear, oar, or another hard object, don't hesitate to use it. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. If there is a shark swimming calmly nearby, do not attempt to attack; more often than not, they mean you no harm. Always remember: Sharks can smell blood and urine for a distance of several miles. If you are free swimming (no wet-suit or gloves) do not attempt to grab a shark fin or back, (grey areas) these spots can cut you or rub your skin off, causing you to bleed and most likely triggering a sharks blood lust. In open water, get back-to-back with another swimmer or diver so that you can see, and defend against, an attack from any direction. All tip submissions are carefully reviewed before being published. If you can put your back to something, like a coral reef, do so. That said, there are a number of steps you can take to increase your chances of survival during a (highly improbable) attack, according to Richard Peirce, a shark expert and former chairman of the UK-based Shark Trust charity. Kick and punch outwards from the circle. Generally, most sharks' reaction times aren't so fast they can see you swinging and open their mouths first, but if they're already coming at you with an open mouth and you can't avoid them, try aiming with the other hand. By using our site, you agree to our. However, it’s best to have it at the back of your mind that an attack could happen. Once free So no, until the relevant authorities declare that it is safe, you do not get back in the water, even if you weren't attacked. Do not thrash your arms or kick or splash while you swim. If you go swimming and splashing away, you're almost inviting the shark to come give you an exploratory or an attack bite.". Protect Yourself from Dogs While Walking. "An awful lot of attacks occur in river mouths, where there is silt and other material in suspension in the river -- people washing their clothes, people washing themselves," says Peirce, who has spent time in Jeffreys Bay, South Africa, where Fanning's encounter occurred Sunday. This will attract the shark, as it will be able to sense your movement. Aim for the head, specifically the eyes or the gills. Will it do anything? Do not go swimming at dawn, dusk or at night because these are the times when sharks feed. Fight with your fists, elbows, knees, and feet. Sure, we could talk about the statistically infinitesimal chance that you’re going to get attacked by a shark (about 1 in 11.5 million), and that the vast majority of shark attacks are non-fatal, and that sharks don’t actually want to eat people, they just get confused sometimes. "I've had a lot of sharks come at me, and it's (been) enough to use a shark billy -- a small metal rod between two and three feet long -- and I've just given them a little nudge on their nose.". If the shark retreats, move slowly and calmly towards the nearest safe area, but do not make any sudden movements and do not turn your back on the shark as you are swimming. Steadily, terrifyingly, the shark is closing in. There are over 400 species of shark, and around a dozen are considered highly dangerous to humans - chiefly the great white, tiger shark and bull shark. Peirce recommends avoiding estuaries, particularly where there are bull sharks -- which, along with great whites and tiger sharks, are the most likely to attack humans. What do you do if the shark's mouth opens when you are planning to strike the eyes or gills? Additionally, use pepper spray or a knife to attack the cheetah. Do not swim away from shark at any situation. ... you'll both have a better chance to survive if you ascend while pressed together, back to back. If the cheetah pounces on … Sharks can smell and taste even the … Move slowly toward the shore or a boat; choose whichever is closest. Unfortunately, there isn’t one simple answer on how to survive a shark attack. Cut Off Possible Attack Angles As mentioned, sharks like the “gotcha” approach and will often try to attack you from behind. After a shark attack, then it's not safe, as there is likely a decent food source that attracted that shark, and probably more sharks, to the area. There are over 500 species of sharks. You're unlikely to run into the kind of shark that attacks humans unprovoked -- bull sharks, tiger sharks, and. Zero to 60: Night Snowboarding. It will feel threatened and may go on the offence. You're protected from behind, for example, and that enables you to keep the shark in sight in front of you and maybe swim to the top of the reef slowly to where your boat is.". "If a shark sees you as a competitor for its food source, that can be one reason it attacks you," he explains. Blood indicates the presence of something to eat and may attract sharks, says Peirce, "but what's often not realized is that urine has the exact same effect. Although shark attacks are rare, a bite from these powerful sea creatures can be deadly. Do not block the shark's path. How To Survive a Shark Attack How To! ... To survive a cheetah attack, wave your hands in the air to make yourself look as big as possible, and yell at the cheetah in order to scare it off. And if you're sitting on a surfboard in the water all day, you're peeing all day through your wetsuit.". Be aware of your surroundings. Sharks... Curl up into a ball if it looks like it’s just passing by. If so, turn it into a weapon. Another suggestion is to attack its eyes or gills because these are the most painful spots for a shark. Even just a single bite by a large white shark like this can cause death by blood loss. "If I didn't want to be seen by a great white shark as a competitor -- and if it wasn't showing massive interest in me -- I would actually curl up so he shows even less interest in me.". Stay calm. What's behind increase in shark attacks off the Carolinas. By Malia Wollan. When it comes to shark attacks and shark incidents, the news out there is grim right now. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Do not take your eyes off the shark. Swim around and repeat. Less than 10% of the incidents report fighting back. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Tips for Surviving a Shark Attack. Knowing how to respond can mean the difference between life and death. Sharks have an extraordinary sense of smell and can detect a drop of blood in several hundred million parts of water, according to Peirce. In Australia, 6 of them were fatal. I like to have a singular focus when defending myself from apex predators. Advertisement. Hitting the shark on the snout has helped many people survive. If the shark is waiting for a time to strike, however, try to wait it out. Although you may get a few small bites from fighting back, these tactics will increase your … Join us on a 12-month journey to see them all. To create this article, 234 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. How would it help to stay still? When it comes to shark attacks and shark incidents, the news out there is grim right now. To be able to defend against the shark, you must know where it is, so make every effort to watch the animal, even as you are working … Do not give up. If you truly want to survive a shark attack, instead of taking an adventure to an Australian beach you might be better off exploring the streets of Dudley. Shark scales are very rough and can cut flesh quite easily. This goes back to the first point: displacing the least amount of water possible -- ie no thrashing and splashing around -- gradually swim backwards away from the shark towards shore. Sharks are flexible and they can turn their head and easily attack. Peirce also says women who are menstruating should stay on the beach -- and that people who cut themselves while swimming should get out of the water. [1] X Research source Sharks have several different attack methods. Do not cut off a shark's path to the ocean. We are the ones invading their territory - doing that to any species, or even fellow humans, is always risky. • If you're bleeding, including menstruating, stay on the beach. "Keep your back to something like a coral reef. The best thing to do is stay calm and hover in the water. Also, doing this prevents the bitten area from being stuck even more in the shark's mouth, as shark teeth are pointed inward to lock in their prey.. The unfortunate reality of a shark attack is that if one does decide you … Look for a reef or rock on the bottom of the ocean. They're effectively putting chum in the water and bringing around sharks.". Zero to 60: The Journey Not the Destination. "There's all this talk about punching a shark in the nose. The shark moves much faster than you. Remember not to make any sudden movements. If a very large predator, say a great white shark or grizzly bear, attacks you in full predatory mode, then it makes no difference what you do. In other words: they won't care less. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 1,183,472 times. Swimming will alert the shark because they have a sensor along their body that detects panicked movement. If a shark is clearly in attack mode, you need to make yourself as big as possible in the water, according to Peirce: "The bigger you are in the water, the more respect you'll get.". As long as you keep fighting, there is a good chance the shark will eventually give up and search for easier prey. Remember to breathe as you fight. In Australia, 6 of them were fatal. So, if you do spend time in the ocean, it may be helpful for you to know how to survive a shark attack. X. David was in the ocean in Hawaii when the unthinkable happened—a shark attacked him and bit off his leg. Unfortunately, if a shark becomes interested in you, it will be extremely tough to escape. References. If you are standing between the shark and the open ocean, move away. "A lot of shark attacks are cases of mistaken identity," Peirce says, "due to reduced visibility and identification ability on the behalf of the shark.". To learn more about how to get in a defensive position to prepare for the attack, keep reading! Try instead to get away from the shark - but don't ever lose sight of the creature during an attack. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. ", This is where it gets complicated. Surviving the attack. They mainly hunt seals and other large mammals, so humans floating on the surface of the ocean can easily be mistaken for food. Then claw, kick, elbow, and generally endeavour to injure the eyes and gills. HOW TO SURVIVE A SHARK ATTACK. Absolutely. Even if it is unlikely it will occur, you should always be alert in case it happens. Another suggestion is to attack its eyes or gills because these are the most painful spots for a shark. wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. Check with the Locals. Last Updated: August 23, 2020 Body language is more important to a shark. 1) DO NOT PLAY DEAD! Remember, it is important to keep the shark in view. "That's why we often get exploratory bites which don't result in death and sometimes don't even result in serious injury. Try to wear dark clothes if you are going under water. Sharks rarely attack, but when they do, severe and sometimes fatal injuries commonly result. Sharks live in water because it's the only way they can live; humans only go in there for fun. If you stay calm, the shark may be uninterested. Step 4: Fight back If the worst happens … If … This article has been viewed 1,183,472 times. Of course, the best way to not get hurt by sharks is to avoid a shark attack in the first place. Instead, choose dark, plain colors. When sharks attack, get out of the water, fast! ", "If fisherman are catching fish or struggling with fish in the water, that's one of the prime attractors for a shark," he says. Zero to 60: King of the … If you see fishing boats, Peirce says "forget it. A sharp object is a good way to inflict enough pain to scare away the shark. If you are attacked while in a group, form a circle and defend yourselves from the circle. If Your Arm is Attacked, Keep It Over Your Head. If going for a swim in the ocean, bring others along as you are always safer in a group, and bring a diving knife. This article has been viewed 1,183,472 times. You can fight, scream, beg, play dead. Staying out of shark habitats is the surest way to avoid getting hurt. Screaming at the shark will have absolutely no effect, except perhaps annoying and angering the shark. % of people told us that this article helped them. If you don't want to tangle with a shark, don't go where sharks hang out. 1 /1 How to survive a shark attack. How to survive a shark attack. You are safer near cover and underwater with good sight then you are going up to the surface and losing sight of the creature. Swimming early in the morning or late at night can be lovely, but it's also the time when a shark attack is most likely. Here are a few things to do, and not do, if a shark attacks you or is about to attack you. If you have accidentally wandered into shark-infested waters, however, you need to have a plan in place. Why don't we just get rid of all sharks so that we don't have to worry about attacks? Eye contact is neither aggressive nor non-aggressive in sharks. If the shark manages to grab your arm as you intend to strike, use your other hand to punch the other side. Do not turn your back on the shark as you move. ! Failing that, become the toughest kid on the block by standing up to the fierce creature with a signature move known to throw sharks off kilter. How to. Humans, apes, dogs and cats all have paws and hands. Keep calmly swimming to shore or to anything near you that you could rest on, without being in the water, and then call for help. Across the entire world, there have been over 2,500 unprovoked shark attacks documented, and although they are often hit-and-run random attacks, it is important to learn what to do in case you ever find yourself in this situation. "If a white shark is in full attack mode, there's not much you're going to be able to do at that point," he says. A shark fin is heading straight for you. Do you get back in the water if you're not attacked, after a shark attack has happened? A shark approached surfer Mick Fanning at a tournament in South Africa on Sunday. To divers, if you are getting followed by a shark, you should have a knife on you or a spike. Aim for the shark's eyes, gills, or snout. Survive a Shark Attack. Use any inanimate object, such as a. But if the shark seems to simply be passing through, Peirce's advice is to roll up into a ball. If a shark attacks, fight back. It's unlikely to happen but should you come face to face with a great white demon of the deep, you'll want to be prepared. If a shark attacks you, fight back by hitting the shark as hard as you can in the eyes, gills, or on the end of its snout. If shark fighting is your forte you might want to visit one of these five locations (listed in order of likelihood for a shark attack) North America; Australia; Brazil; If there was a shark attack a week ago or a day ago, do not go into the water, until the lifeguard tells you that it is okay to do so. Do not play dead. Why should I punch or hit the Sharks gills? As the article says, sometimes sharks will swim away for awhile, but they will come back, so you can use that time to try and get to a safe area on land or a boat. Sharks have surprisingly rough and sharp skin, unlike the smooth scales of other fish, so be aware of this. Sharks tend to thrash prey around and to tear chunks out of their prey, so if the person bitten essentially "hugs" the shark (latching onto it), they sharply reduce the risk of having large quantities of skin or limbs altogether ripped off of their body. "This is a moving object in the water and you're not staying still either, so what you don't want to do is end up effectively punching at the mouth or anywhere near it. "If you're turning around and facing it the whole time while it circles you, it's not going to be half as comfortable as if it's able to sneak up from behind. Hitting the shark on the snout has helped many people survive. Are you carrying anything with you? Remember that humans kill approximately 100 million sharks a year, while unprovoked shark attacks killed just five people in 2017. Doing the above may help to a degree, but Peirce says the likelihood of escaping an attack from a big shark without injury is slim. Do not be too scared of sharks. Never get on top of a shark. With the climate getting warmer, sharks are starting to head farther north due to warmer waters. That's okay, but remember that just underneath the nose is a mouth," says Peirce. Of these attacks, 17 were in Australia and 23 were from the USA. If the shark thinks I am dead, it will attack anyway, won't it? Instructions Step 1: Stay calm Try to stay calm. Stay as still as possible while waiting, as long as the shark is not actively attacking you; and get into the boat as quickly as possible, once the boat reaches you. If you can, use a sharp or heavy object to hit the shark, such as a spear, rock, or even a camera, but if not, you can use your fists, elbows, knees, or feet. You need adequate oxygen to effectively defend against an attack in order to make a quick getaway and retreat to safety. The shark won't notice the difference. Shark Attack: Survival Guide. Of these attacks, 17 were in Australia and 23 were from the USA. Sharks still hunt during the day. "Don't start splashing around -- you're just going to excite, incite and encourage the shark's interest," says Peirce. With Charles Duhigg How To Listen on Apple Podcasts. It's not the best thing that's ever happened to you, but the worst thing you can do right now is panic. Swim in, take a bite while thrashing its head side to side, and swim off to swallow. This will only make them mistake you for free prey. You can also kick it in the chest as it approaches you to throw it backwards. Do not swim alone, no matter what the time is. Never provoke a shark or intentionally put yourself in a position in which you are likely to be attacked. A shark might take a bite and then decide that they … What Could You Do To Survive A Shark Attack? Stay in a group, and do not wander too far from shore. Before you jump in the sea, have a look around the horizon -- what do you see? Normally, they are not trying to hurt you. The shark will simply attempt to swallow its catch. "Whether they're commercial or recreational fishermen, they're often discarding material -- fish they don't want, fish parts, gutting fish. https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/shark-attack-how-to-survive/index.html On second thoughts, you’d probably be safer swimming with the sharks. Often a shark will mistake you for prey, leaving you with injuries after realising his mistake. Share Link. What if I scream at the shark? "A shark has got no paws or hands, so if it wants to explore something, the only capability it's got to do that is to put it in its mouth," says Peirce. What happens if I lose sight of the shark? Back up If possible, move yourself into a position where your back is against a solid structure. "You must try and keep the animal in sight and very slowly and gently try and swim backwards and get into shallow water. If we want to explore something we pick it up and we touch it, we feel it, we put it to our nose. Again, you've got to be careful -- large sharks can attack in very shallow depths.". Never play dead around a shark. Highlighted by the fatal attack at Snapper in early September on a 46-year-old male surfer, there have been 51 shark attacks so far this year. You're unlikely to run into the kind of shark that attacks humans unprovoked -- bull sharks, tiger sharks, and. If you have a spear gun or pole, use it! https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/shark-attack-how-to-survive/index.html, http://traveltips.usatoday.com/survive-shark-attack-2474.html, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/what-not-to-do-shark_n_5081316, http://www.outsideonline.com/blog/outdoor-adventure/surviving-a-great-white-shark-attack.html, https://www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu/shark-attacks/reduce-risk/divers/, https://www.forbes.com/sites/alliewilkinson/2015/09/06/how-to-fight-back-if-a-shark-attacks/#3a1be9256061, https://usa.oceana.org/tips-avoiding-shark-attacks, https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2005/07/shark-attack-tips/, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. How to Survive a Shark Attack. If you do not have a weapon, improvise. If you spot a shark and it hasn’t spotted you, you can still swim away quickly and quietly without splashing water and get to safety. In fact, this is the normal way they eat. If you have a fishing spear, oar, or another hard object, don't hesitate to use it. If you see fish continuously jumping out of the water, it probably means there is a predator around, which may be a shark. Shark attack stats. “I don’t think you’re gonna make it,” a medic told the 25-year-old on the helicopter ride to the hospital. wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. They will attack and your chances of survival will be limited. Latch onto the muzzle of the shark with any free limbs to avoid being thrashed. If there’s a seawall or reef near, put your back against it so that you can keep the shark in front of you. To learn more about how to get in a defensive position to prepare for the attack, keep reading! How to Survive a Shark Attack. There's a perfect beach for every week of the year. The combination of these two … SHARK ATTACK SURVIVAL TIPS. This is when sharks are most active and have a competitive sensory advantage. Do not wear bright jewelry or watches. He, But while the encounter left Fanning understandably rattled, there's no need to feel a similar panic about your upcoming beach vacation: the odds of being attacked by a shark are. If the shark grabs you with its mouth. So you're being circled by a shark. And that’s how you survive a shark attack. Once you regain your composure, here’s what else Peirce says you can do: Stay facing the shark and maintain eye contact. If you have nothing around you, use your own body. Gouging the eyes, hitting the gills, or shoving things in the mouth may help though, as it made the shark stop or leave about 2/3 of the time. The International Shark Attack File gives the following advice: Avoid being in the water from sunset to sunrise. It is erratic movement, such as swimming, that is a bad idea. We could say that by staying away from active fishing grounds, river mouths, and … If you are diving near the shore, you may need to descend to find cover. The bad news is shark attacks are steadily on the rise. Which means the sharks are still there. As the shark swims around you, keep your head on a swivel and try to maintain eye contact. After Jaws was released in 1979, white sharks (what people in the film referred to as great whites) took the stage as the most feared sharks, and for good reason. Highlighted by the fatal attack at Snapper in early September on a 46-year-old male surfer, there have been 51 shark attacks so far this year. For one thing, sharks are the apex predators of the oceans - they help keep other marine life in healthy balance and regulate the oceans. To create this article, 234 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. But David did make it, and soon he learned that surviving the shark wasn’t the hardest part—it was what … "Sharks are ambush predators," Peirce explains. Warmer waters also brings more people to the beach and swimming in the ocean is the main attraction. It attracts sharks. Be as hostile and vicious as possible. Sharks usually hunt at drop-offs or near banks. Additionally, it would be cruel to eliminate a whole species simple because they're inconvenient for us. SURVIVE. First things first: Despite what happened to, Fanning, a world champion surfer, had a run-in with one on live TV during a surfing competition in South Africa. There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. Though nose and gills are sensitive, they are most protective of their eyes. "If you're a diver with an underwater camera, use it, if you're a snorkeler, rip off your snorkel and use it to poke the shark," Peirce says. If a boat is nearby, call out calmly, but loudly, for them to come to you. To improve your chances of surviving a shark attack, we spoke with George Burgess, director of the Florida Program for Shark Research and manager of the International Shark Attack File. This means that you should also avoid areas with fishing boats, as discarded fish fluids (blood, guts, etc) will attract them to the area. If you're a diver and you run into trouble, try to get into a position where the shark can't get behind you, says Peirce. Kashmira Gander @kashmiragander. They won't be able to breathe properly if you damage them there. Scientists do not believe sharks attack humans to eat us; rather, they bite into our flesh because they are curious to find out what kind of animal we are; kind of like how dogs like to sniff new friends, only a lot more deadly. If you find yourself in an aggressive encounter, give it hell: punch, kick and poke at sensitive spots -- but be careful where you aim. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. Floating as if you were dead in the water is not a good idea either - the shark may still do a "trial bite" to determine whether or not you're food. This isn't a bear, it's a shark. {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/6\/6f\/Survive-a-Shark-Attack-Step-2.jpeg\/v4-460px-Survive-a-Shark-Attack-Step-2.jpeg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/6\/6f\/Survive-a-Shark-Attack-Step-2.jpeg\/aid42848-v4-728px-Survive-a-Shark-Attack-Step-2.jpeg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":"728","bigHeight":"546","licensing":"

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