A kayaker’s ramming by a tiger shark and the sighting of another big shark off Queensland’s Sunshine Coast have prompted new opposition calls for a parliamentary inquiry.
The kayaker was sent flying after a four-metre tiger shark rammed and then sank its teeth into his tiny craft off Moffat Beach on Thursday morning.
The man, aged in his 30s, was fishing when flung into the water, surfacing to find the shark with its jaws still clamped around one end.
He managed to right his craft, which was upside down, allowing him to climb back on but he was in a perilous situation, with the kayak taking on water and the shark circling.
Rescuers believe he only lived to tell his tale because he was able to contact the Coast Guard by radio.
“He was having a paddle out to sea and fishing and, yeah, unfortunately out of the blue a shark has just attacked his kayak and latched onto it, throwing him out,” rescuer Jacob Thomson from Surf Life Saving Queensland told AAP.
“The shark still had its jaw on his kayak, which was upside down but he’s managed to flip it and at some point the shark has let go.
“But it was starting to sink, there was only small pocket of air holding it afloat. The shark continued to circle him for some time until we got there.”
Two jet skiers brought the shocked paddler back to shore about 45 minutes after he called for help.
Mr Thomson said he was checked by paramedics and was rattled but fine.
The LNP opposition reckons this and shark sightings off the coast and three tragic attacks in Cid Harbour, one of them fatal, reinforce the need for an investigation by politicians of the state’s shark safety program.
They tried to get one up in parliament but it was knocked down by the government, which wants to get to the cause of attacks in Cid Habour and has sent out requests for quotes to research organisations.
Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said they want to know what might have led to the fatal attack in the Whitsundays region this month and two non fatal ones in September.