San Clemente Spearfisherman Attacked by Great White Shark

By on December 2, 2015 in Awesome, Surfing with 0 Comments

As Tai Risko and his two sons Kainoa, left, and Tai were spearfishing off San Clemente’s T-Street Beach on Saturday, Nov. 21, a Great White shark aggressively came after Kainoa. Photo: OC Register

A teenage spearfisherman was attacked by a Great White shark in the surf near T-Street in San Clemente, CA. The fish charged 17-year-old Kainoa Risko as he was swimming back to shore after spending an afternoon spearfishing with his father and brother.

The trio had spent about 2 hours swimming near the famed surf spot south of the San Clemente pier when a 9-foot Great White approached Kainoa in 15 feet of water.

As the teen swam to shore trailing behind his father, Tai, and brother, 19-year-old, Tai Jr., Kainoa noticed a large shadow to his left and immediately recognized it as the feared predator.

As reported by the OC Register:

“It turned around and it like swam really fast at me and charged at me,” the San Clemente High School student said.

He poked it in the nose with his speargun.

“I flipped on my back and watched it,” he said. “It was swimming behind me … just following me. Then it charged me again from behind. I flipped over and poked it again in the nose with my speargun. Then it went out to my left as I was swimming in. It charged me a third time.

“Before it got close to me, it turned and broadsided me,” Kainoa said. “I poked it again in the side. By that time, I was in the surf zone. It turned and just swam back out.”

Kainoa then yelled to his brother and father about what had happened. As he stepped onto shore in an adrenalin rush, he collapsed onto the sand.

The Riskos promptly reported the incident to San Clemente lifeguards to alert the public. Lifeguards closed the beach to bathing for 24 hours. It was reopened the next day after there were no additional sightings.

The trio were regular divers but had never experienced an incident such as this.

“We definitely dodged a bullet,” Tai Jr. said.

 

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