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Beach evacuated after 'Jaws-sized' great white shark spotted 100m from shore

An aerial shot of the great whote shark. Photo: Shark Alerts South Australia/Facebook
An aerial shot of the great whote shark. Photo: Shark Alerts South Australia/Facebook

A beach busy with sun worshippers and bathers had to be evacuated after a great white shark thought to be up to seven metres (22ft) was spotted in the water.

The huge shark was seen off the coast of southern Australia, forcing the evacuation of Marino Rocks in south Adelaide.

A patrolling helicopter made the discovery of the shark around 100m out to sea on Sunday afternoon.

The helicopter's crew members said it was around seven metres long, making it potentially as big as the fictional shark made famous in the Jaws films.

"It's the biggest I've ever seen as a crew member in the Westpac chopper. We put it down as 7m the photo really doesn't do it justice," one crew member said, according to a post on Facebook by Shark Alerts South Australia.

The great white shark species shot to fame following Steven Speilberg's 1975 movie Jaws, starring Roy Scheider and Richard Dreyfuss.