Umpqua River Unprovoked Shark Attack
On September 27, 2010 David Lowden, was attacked by a Great White Shark, while surfing with Mark Lorincz, and Justin Martin at the South Jetty of the Umpqua River in Winchester Bay, Oregon. It was 4:00 PM and they had been on the water about 45 minutes. It was sunny with a light fog coming and going and an estimated air temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit. They were 80 - 100 yards from shore, in water 15 - 20 feet deep with a sandy ocean floor and 4 - 5 feet of water visibility.
Erosion along the jetty wall created a trench deeper than the surrounding ocean floor. No unusual behavior of marine mammals, fish, or birds, was observed in the area prior to the attack.
"Surf conditions were good with a large swell, light winds, and good interval. Water temperature was much higher than normal, around 56 - 58 Fahrenheit. High tide was at 2:15 PM that day and the peak we were surfing was further out than normal due to the size of the swell. After surfing for about 45 minutes, and catching only two waves, the current pushed me towards the outside and wide of the peak that was breaking about 30 feet South of the jetty. I paddled hard to fight the current and regain position in the peak. During this effort I was struck from underneath by the unmistakable force of a shark, due to past experience being bumped by a Great White in September of 2006 at the same location. I knew right away from the hardness of the object that it was a shark. The shark was at full attack speed nailing the tail of my board ejecting me forward as the shark breached the surface of the water with most of its body. I got a pretty good look at the overall presence but it happened so fast I wasn't able to pick out details. The shark turned on its side as it headed back down, thrashing its tail a couple times before disappearing somewhere underneath or behind me. Frantic, I pulled my board back toward me by the leash. I then began to paddle as fast as I could toward the jetty which seemed much closer than the beach. Luckily, during the encounter I had been pushed inside and toward the peak enough to grab the first wave in that came moments later. After regrouping on the beach, the other two surfers were able to fill in the blanks as to what really happened as both saw the entire incident take place. We came to the conclusion it was a Great White between 11 and 14 feet in length. I believe that it either miscalculated the attack or aborted at the last second clipping the tail of my board, striking the fins first which I think must have given it a bit of a shock and caused it to thrash about after the initial contact. My board sustained minimal damage considering, losing a fin and crushing a fin box and creasing the tail. No injuries occurred."
This is the fifth authenticated unprovoked shark attack from the Pacific Coast of North America for this year and the first for Oregon.
http://www.surfline.com/surf-news/press ... ack_48166/