For the second day in a row, a Long Island town closed down beaches after shark sightings in the waters off the shore, officials said.
Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin said that lifeguards at Nickerson Beach reported seeing a sizable shark around 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, about 40 yards from shore. It is just the latest in a string of ongoing shark sightings off Long Island coastlines.
Beaches in the town were red-flagged, meaning no swimming was allowed, after the sighting. According to Nassau County Executive Laura Curran, it was the 17th time a shark has been spotted so far this summer.
On Monday, East Atlantic Beach and Atlantic Beach Estates were red-flagged after a fisherman caught a shark Sunday. A video by Pat York shows one of the four small sharks he caught on Long Beach.
All the sharks were safely released back into the water and then the red flags were issued to warn beachgoers of the potential hazards in the water.
"We've added more lifeguards on the stands, surfboards and added this week jet ski patrols again to monitor the shoreline because again that's where these sharks like to go and that's particularly dangerous for swimmers," said Clavin.
Shark sightings have become a semi-regular occurrence in the county, with officials modifying swimming restrictions or closing beaches entirely off-and-on for several weeks now.
Most sharks seen in the waters have been small. But one sighting last month prompted closures at Lido West and Nickerson beaches for reports of a large bull shark between 7 and 10 feet long. Town officials say they haven't seen a shark that size in the area in at least four years.