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Australian Beach Evacuated After 60 Bull Sharks Spotted In Shallows

by : Emma Rosemurgey on : 10 Jun 2019 17:59
Australian Beach Evacuated After 60 Bull Sharks Spotted In ShallowsAustralian Beach Evacuated After 60 Bull Sharks Spotted In ShallowsNSWSharkSmart/Twitter

Beach swimmers and surfers were forced to evacuate a popular New South Wales beach on Monday when 60 bull sharks were spotted among the waves.

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Officials from Surf Life Saving NSW cleared the water by Lighthouse Beach in Ballina after the sharks, thought to be around two metres long, were spotted.

About three hours later the beach was officially shut to members of the public. It’s believed the sharks had gathered to feed as the tide was going out.

Gary Meredith from Surf Life Saving NSW told The Northern Star he’d ‘never seen anything like it.’

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He added how ‘amazing’ the clarity of the water was in allowing the sharks to be spotted by helicopters and bystanders making it sound like beachgoers had a lucky escape.

However, some surfers came closer to the danger than others as around 50 to 60 remained in the surf, despite warnings and sirens, according to Ballina Shire mayor David Wright.

He told the publication:

The break right on North Wall was really working, and that’s where (the sharks) were.

The surf was great but just (nearby), that’s where a lot of the sharks were.

Once again, we’ve got people, in my opinion, being selfish when they know that the sharks are there.

Wright added how frustrated he was that volunteers were forced to spend their public holiday attempting to help people who refused to leave the water, risking their own safety in the process.

This isn’t the first time sharks have caused high alert in the Ballina area in the last few years. Last year, a shark ripped a chunk out of a kite surfer’s board and a white shark attacked another surfer later in the year.

A total of 11 shark attacks took place in the northern New South Wales area between 2014 and 2016, which makes you wonder why on earth the surfers would ignore warnings from officials.

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Shark nets were even installed in a bid to keep swimmers safe, however they had to be removed last year over fears they could harm migrating whales. Now, the beach is monitored by drones.

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Emma Rosemurgey

Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.

Topics: Animals, beach, shark attack, Sharks, surfers, warning

Credits

The Northern Star
  1. The Northern Star

    Anger as surfers stay in water with 60 bull sharks