A shark seen circling kayakers led lifeguards to close a San Diego County beach in California.
A one-and-a-half mile stretch of beach from La Jolla Cove to Scripps Pier was closed on Saturday afternoon after a confirmed sighting of the eight-to-ten-foot hammerhead shark.
Lifeguards reviewed a video taken by a kayaker of the shark and ordered the beach closed.
San Diego Fire-Rescue spokesman Lee Swanson said the shark appeared to be acting aggressively toward the group of kayakers and followed them in towards shore.
People who were swimming climbed onto other kayaks for safety, NECN.com reported.
A marine biologist at the nearby Scripps Institution of Oceanography confirmed that the size, species and behavior of the shark warranted the closure.
Swanson said there have been no additional sightings.
Lifeguards will reassess the water Sunday morning to decide whether to reopen the beach.
I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t have needed the marine biologist to tell me that the shark “warranted the closure” of the beach. While most of you might have yelled – GET THE F*** OUT OF THE WATER! NOW!
Reasonable steps should include: Assess the situation. Don’t panic! Use any equipment to create a barrier between you and the shark. Alert others around you, in a calm manner. Remain in a group and leave the water in a calm and swift, but smooth, manner. Alert the lifeguards, if on duty!
Other tips to remember when in the water:
- Have a buddy
- Stay out of the water at dawn and dusk
- Avoid murky waters and steep drop-offs
- Avoid high-contrast clothing or shiny jewelry
- Go to beaches patrolled by lifeguards
In actual fact, you really don’t have much to worry about. You are 40 times more likely to be struck by lightning than to be attacked by a shark.
Written by Nancy Hayes
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