Crew of Florida boat fought off sharks in failed sea rescue

The crew of a Florida dive boat chartered to watch dolphins found themselves fighting off sharks as they answered a call from the U.s. Coast Guard to assist in the recovery of a capsized speed boat north of the Bahamas.

The Gulfstream Eagle, a 145-foot dive boat based out of Riviera Beach, Fla., had left port Saturday with 22 passengers aboard on the dolphin-watching trip when the call came Sunday. A crewman, Jonathan Rose, dove into the waters and swam toward a floating life vest when a crewmate spotted two 12-foot tiger sharks.

As Rose worked to recover other bodies, a fellow crew member poked the sharks with a spear to keep them at bay.

Bahamian police and the Bahamas Air and Sea Rescue Association, a volunteer group, retrieved the bodies from the dive boat later in the evening. While they were on the scene, sharks consumed a fourth body in the water, a police report said. How many people had been aboard the speedboat and who they were was not known.

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