Terrifying moment diver is rammed by a shark which sneaked up behind him while he was spearfishing off Florida coast
- Paul Dabill was spearfishing off Jupiter in Florida when he spotted the shark
A hungry shark on the lookout for lunch sneaks up on a diver from behind in heart-pounding footage.
Paul Dabill was spearfishing in the waters off Jupiter, in the US state of Florida, when he caught himself a snapper.
Little did he know, he wasn’t alone – a shark had been lurking and the diver was now sandwiched between the predator and its lunch.
‘I had just shot a snapper and was going to retrieve the fish,’ said Paul, 48.
‘I didn’t realise it at the time but a shark was watching me, and as soon as I shot the fish it decided to go after it as well.
Paul Dabill was spearfishing in the waters off Jupiter, in the US state of Florida, when he spotted the shark
The curious shark, believed to be a nurse shark, snuck up behind him while he was diving
It wasn’t until the shark collided with him that he saw it
‘He swam up from behind and underneath me so I didn’t see the shark until it collided with me. It was very shocking to say the least!’
Mr Dabill, a restauranteur and photographer, is all too aware of the risk of spearfishing in Floridian waters.
He said: ‘Sharks are always around where we spearfish in south-east Florida. You always need to be aware of their presence.
‘The riskiest time is when a fish is speared – that is when the sharks will go after it.
‘Great care needs to be taken retrieving the fish and it should be removed from the water as fast as possible.
‘As soon as we collided, I swam towards the surface and the shark swam in a different direction.’
Paul believes the shark that rammed him was a nurse shark.
‘Generally they are not a dangerous species,’ he said.
Mr Dabill said while nurse sharks are not considered dangerous, they are known for stealing fish from spearfishers
Despite their docile reputation, nurse sharks (pictured in an aquarium in Thailand) were actually ranked fourth highest for documented shark attacks on humans by a 2016 paper
‘However they have been known to steal fish from spearfishermen and divers collecting lobsters.
‘If your hand gets in the way of the shark trying to eat something a bite could occur.’
Despite their docile reputation, nurse sharks were actually ranked fourth highest for documented shark attacks on humans by a 2016 paper.
When they do attack, they bite with powerful, vice-like jaws and are capable of inflicting serious injury.
In some cases, their jaws lock and victims can only be freed by surgical intervention, according to Florida Museum.
But they normally feed on smaller prey and rarely attack humans unprovoked.
The close encounter between the shark and the diver in Florida comes just days after a Russian tourist was mauled to death by a shark in the Egyptian resort of Hurghada.
The horrific attack was watched by the father and girlfriend of the victim, thought to be 23-year-old Vladimir Popov.
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