A US Coastguard Officer fired rounds into the sea after an 8ft shark was spotted heading towards a group of 40 service men and woman who were enjoying the water on a break from work.
The group, who had a huge inflatable unicorn in the water with them, were enjoying some downtime when one of their colleagues spotted the massive shark, and raised the alarm.
Maritime Enforcement Specialist 1st Class Samuel Cintron was still on guard, keeping an eye out for his colleagues, when he spotted the predator heading straight for his friends, reports The Mirror.
A post on the US Coast Guard Cutter Kimball Facebook page quickly reassured people that everyone on board was safe.
It read: “After completing our operations for the day, there were no vessels around for miles, the weather was perfect, and we were a zillion miles from land.
“We had not been off the ship for weeks, were at that point where every day feels like “Groundhog Day,” and were looking for something to break up the monotony.
“Answer: Swim Call! We had a fully vetted and tested plan we’ve used before, conducted safety briefs, established communications between the various stations, launched our small boat with extra crew and a dressed out swimmer and stationed it 50 yards off the ship, set an armed shark watch, opened and manned the Rescue Station, and put an accountability system in place.
“Everything was by the numbers. Everyone was having a great day. Everyone was smiling and having fun. It was perfect!
“And then… Bridge personnel reported “Shark!” over the radio.”
The post added it was like something out of a Hollywood movie.
“A 6-8 foot shark (no exaggeration) surfaced at the Rescue Door and was swimming toward 30-40 people in the water about 30 feet away. Everyone on the Flight Deck had a bird’s eye view.
“A review of video shot by a crew member reveals it was likely a Long-Fin Mako or Pelagic Thresher Shark – not something to mess with!
“ME1 Cintron, our shark watch, was on the Flight Deck and immediately locked on target…literally! ￼
“Our animal-lover chief who wants to save every animal she finds yelled “Shoot it!”
“While some crew went for the Jacob’s ladder on the Fantail, others went for the open stern notch at the ship’s stern, and a large group swam for the small boat.
“ME1 Cintron fired a well-aimed burst right at the shark to protect shipmates just feet away.
“It turned away for a few seconds then turned back.
“We kept directing people out of the water while keeping a clear line of sight on the shark.
“ME1 fired bursts as needed to keep the shark from his shipmates with amazing accuracy. The shark would wave off with each burst but kept coming back toward our shipmates.
“It wasn’t the panic of the 4th of July scene from JAWS, but once everyone realised what was happening, they moved with a purpose!
“Everyone stayed focused and worked the problem. The small boat quickly looked like a vessel overloaded with SAR survivors. Others threw heaving lines to shipmates in the water and helped them aboard via the stern notch.
“All hands are safe and accounted for. We even saved the inflatable unicorn!”