2 Shark Attacks Reported Off Long Island Within Hours

Two people were injured during shark attacks reported off Long Island within a one-day span on Wednesday (July 13), NBC News reports.

The first victim was reportedly knocked off a paddleboard and suffered a 4-inch gash to the leg by what was reported to be a tiger shark estimated to be about 4 feet long at around 7:30 a.m. near Smith Point on Fire Island, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced.

The paddleboarder was reported to have punched the shark during the attack and avoided non-life-threatening injuries.

Hours later, another man, identified as a 49-year-old from Arizona, was reported to have been bitten on the wrist and buttocks by a shark while waist-deep in water at around 6:00 p.m. off Seaview, also located on Fire Island, the Suffolk County Police Department confirmed.

The second victim is also reported to have avoided life-threatening injuries.

Authorities said there were no confirmed sightings of the shark in a search shortly after the initial reported incident and the beach was closed before reopening later Wednesday.

The incident at Smith Point took place 10 days after a lifeguard at the beach was bitten in the chest by a shark while playing a victim in a training exercise, which was the first reported shark attack incident since it opened in 1959, NBC New York reported.

The Florida Museum of Natural History’s International Shark Attack File reports only 12 unprovoked shark attack incidents have been confirmed to have taken place in New York state since 1837.

Two nonfatal shark attacks were reported to have taken place off Fire Island in 2018 — which included at least one involving a sand tiger shark — when Atlantic menhaden, common prey of the sharks, were heavily populated in the area, making both instances believed to have been unintentional, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

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