Whale watchers nearly sunk by playful humpback

WHALE watchers almost became a part of the show after a playful humpback nearly landed on their small boat earlier this month off the coast of Western Australia.

Vision has emerged of the incident with the boat and its passengers lucky to survive the once-in-a-lifetime encounter near a reef off Exmouth.

The footage, shot from another boat, showed the gigantic mammal breach high into the air before slamming back into the water just a few metres of the bow of the small boat.

Instead of being instantly sunk, the shocked group were completely drenched and left with one whale of a tale to tell.

"We thought 'Geez, that was a bit close'," Mark Collins, who shot the film, told WAtoday.

"It was quite a spectacle, but it could have been a disaster."