A shark sighting at Gas Bay, south of Margaret River townsite on Thursday morning had all surfers in the area leaving the water with onlookers fearful of a repeat of the fatal shark attack in Esperance just a few days prior.
According to local surfing experts Surfing Margaret River, the 2.5 metre shark of unknown species was sighted on Thursday morning as surfers enjoyed a fine day in the water.
The Surf Life Saving WA (SLSWA) Westpac helicopter circled the area and hovered for some time over the water, before approaching even closer and sounding the shark siren.
After hovering for a short period of time, the sirens sounded again and the helicopter departed.
At this point, according to witnesses, all the surfers in the water chose to quickly return to shore.
One bystander noted the air of concern at the beach as Monday’s tragedy lingered in everyone’s minds.
''Nobody wants to see what happened to that poor family and that young girl happen to anyone else this week, or this year, or ever actually.” he said.
Further up the coast at Grunters, where the siren could easily be heard and the chopper easily seen, some people chose to exit the water, while others stayed.
A surfer speaking in the carpark near Grunters said he thought people were “crazy” not to get out of the ocean.
"As if any wave is worth risking your life'' he said.
Another commented that "Sharks don't discriminate, if you're in the water you are a possible target."
For up to date shark sightings and alerts visit www.sharksmart.com.au