Surfer faces terrifying fight with Great White shark after having foot ‘ripped off’ in gruesome attack
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Witnesses have described how a surfer fought off a Great White Shark during a 'sustained and prolonged' attack before it 'ripped his foot off.'
Surfer, Toby Begg, battled with the 14-foot (4m) beast for 30 seconds before it tore his foot off, causing 'significant lower leg injuries' in New South Wales, Australia on the morning of Friday (25 August).
The 44-year-old water-sports enthusiast was at Lighthouse Beach in Port Macquarie when the shark attack took place.
It's claimed by eyewitnesses that the Great White turned around to come back for a second bite when fellow surfers rushed to him in a bid to get Begg out of the water and medical attention.
Thankfully one of the people on the scene was an off-duty emergency doctor, who was able to use sticks and make a tourniquet to stop the bleeding to his severe hip-to-calf injury, until paramedics arrived just after 10am.
The dad-of-two received medical attention on the beach before being transferred to Port Macquarie Base Hospital.
He was said to be in a critical condition and had surgery to save his life before being transferred to Newcastle's John Hunter Hospital for another operation on his injuries to both his legs.
One teenager on the scene described Toby being paralysed by fear as the Apex predator turned to come back for more.
"His foot ripped off and basically he was bleeding everywhere," she told NBN of the traumatic event.
"They were trying to talk to him, he was silent, he was frozen."
She continued: "They tried to tie his leg with the leg rope from the surfboard and some sticks to keep it straight."
A second witness, Loren Enfield, was in the water when the shark bit before rushing to shore to ask bystanders to phone for help.
She said to Port News: "It was awful, you wouldn't want to see it happen to anyone.
"I never want to see it happen again. It was big."
NSW Police Chief Inspector Martin Burke praised the medic who happened on the 'sustained and prolonged attack' that happened 'around 150m offshore'.
He said: "To have the absolute luck of having an emergency department doctor on scene are all going to be key things that are going to lend itself to giving this gentleman the best chance of survival."
Inspector Joshua Smyth from NSW Ambulance also remarked on quick thinking in getting help.
"The bystanders obviously did a remarkable job on the patient initially and to initially arrest that haemorrhage and call triple zero," he said.
"The crews did a really remarkable job.
"They were on scene quickly, they didn't wait on scene for long and the patient was taken to the best and the most appropriate destination."
Police seized Begg's board which was split in half during the powerful attack.
NSW Department of Primary Industries are working alongside Mid North Coast Police District to determine the size of the shark and confirm its species using drones.
James Turnham, Mid North Coast Lifeguard Coordinator, explained that it's been almost a decade since the last shark attack in the area.
Lifeguards at Port Macquarie informed the public that Lighthouse Beach and beaches nearby will be closed for at least 24 hours.
Signs from the Australian Lifeguard Service are warning unsuspecting beachgoers to stay out of the water for the foreseeable.