New retro looking wetsuits said to scare away sharks…can it be true?
Are you scared of sharks? If not, you probably should be!
They’re pretty terrifying creatures that are well known for taking the lives of too many surfers, whilst as windsurfers we maybe slightly less at risk with the added benefit of not sitting in the water looking like a seal, the shark threat surely still crosses the mind of many a windsurfer, particularly in places such as Cape Town, Maui and WA.
Now the Australian brand Radiator have apparently designed wetsuits that deter sharks…
Open Gallery4 Images
They’re pretty brightly coloured, apparently to mimic noxious animals that the shark are scared of and by the looks of the video above it seems they do in fact work.
But let’s be honest, they look a little scary on the beach too don’t they?
Would you rock up to your local break in the zebra style surf suit? It’s quite a bold look, but if it could save your life surely it’s worth it. That said we all know a bicycle helmet is also a life saver, yet how many of us always buckle up?
Check out the full product info from Radiator themselves:
Products using SAMS Shark Deterrent Technology
Applying breakthrough science which reveals how sharks view the world, SAMS has developed two main design variations to reduce the chance of attack.
SAMS Cryptic™ pattern is mainly suited to divers and swimmers and makes it very difficult for a shark to see the wearer in the water.
SAMS Warning™ pattern is primarily suitable for surfers and presents the wearer as unlike shark prey – even something poisonous or unpalatable.
While the patterns may look simple at a glance, there is a complex regime of patented science behind each one. Due to the fact that the colours will be perceived differently by a shark at various water depths, you’ll need to check the design suited to your main watersport.
More on the science
Caution: All sharks are dangerous and unpredictable creatures. It is impossible for SAMS to guarantee that 100% of sharks will be deterred under all circumstances with the SAMS technology. Water based activities in the presence of sharks is inherently dangerous and is not recommended therefore we recommend that if a shark is sighted that the user leaves the water.
Shark Deterrent Dive Range
(SAMS Cryptic™ Technology)
While sharks have a number of receptors used to detect odors and weak electrical fields in the water, it is apparent from research that vision is the crucial sense in the final phase of a shark attack.
The Cryptic Pattern makes it difficult for the shark to see the wearer in the water column by using disruptive coloration and shaping from the perspective of a predatory shark. The pattern is not only difficult for the shark to see but is also designed to blend in with the background colours.
The combination of contrasting colours combined with the shape and size ratio of the patterns, ensures optimal effect at various depths and distances.
So while a shark may locate its prey through a number of different means, it is less likely to attack if the target cannot be seen.
Suitable for: Diving, snorkelling, swimming. Refer to application chart for best suited Cryptic pattern.
Shark Deterrent Surf Range
(SAMS Warning™ Technology)
Many years of anecdotal evidence suggests that a stripe pattern acts as a deterrent or repellent to sharks – but we now know there’s more to the story.
SAMS has applied scientific principles to this theory to discover that very specific contrasting, colours, shapes and dimensions work together for maximum effect. If you look closely, the stripes contain intricate detailing.
Sharks actually have very good eyesight but they see colours and shapes quite differently to the way humans perceive them. Basically sharks see in black and white, but their perception of shading is very acute and impacted by the ‘reflective spectrum’ in the water (how bands of colour react to light).
Scientists note the distinctive vivid coloration of many fish species, including the striped pilotfish which spends it’s life living alongside predatory sharks.
The SAMS Warning™ pattern is designed to overtly present the wearer as unlike any shark prey, or even as an unpalatable or dangerous food option. At the very least this will provide the user with increased protection, but it could also provide the time needed to evacuate the area if a shark is in range.
Suitable for: Surfing, Swimming, Shallow diving. Refer to application chart for best suited Warning pattern.