When 15-year-old Jack Shaw realized a shark had attacked his friend while they swam in neck-deep water off an Australian beach, he only had one thought.
“Get the shark, get it off, get out of the water,” he told 9News. “So I did my best to get it off there, so I was smacking at it, trying to get it off.”
The shark bit his friend, a 15-year-old girl, on her lower leg, Australian Broadcasting Corporation News reported.
“I turned around, it got me on the back and then I said, ‘swim!’ and tried as fast as we could to get back into shore,” Jack told 9News.
Onlookers at Ocean Grove Beach, near Geelong on the Bellarine Peninsula in Victoria, at first thought the teens were just fooling around, Australian Broadcasting Corporation News reported.
When they realized what had happened, off-duty lifeguards and a former trauma nurse visiting the beach helped the teens ashore.
“They both were amazing considering what had happened and the experience they encountered,” former nurse Dianne Hobbs told Australian Broadcasting Corporation News. “She saw the shark and knocked it away.”
The beach was closed following the incident at 7 p.m. local time Monday, Dec. 6, Perth Now reported.
The two teens were taken to the hospital, but Jack returned to school Tuesday, Dec. 7, 9News reported. His friend remains hospitalized after undergoing surgery.
“We haven’t had a significant shark attack in over 40 years,” Pieter Wildekamp of the Victorian Fisheries Authority told the station.
Authorities believe the teens were attacked by a reef shark.