New York lifeguards are being trained in the use of drones and personal watercraft following recent shark bites on local shores, but one shark expert said such solutions have no expertise. I think it lacks the opinion of
City officials in Long Island, New York, said they were stepping up training after five people, including two minors, were reportedly bitten by sharks since Monday.
“We are now more vigilant than ever,” said George Gorman, Long Island Regional Director of the New York State Department of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.
“There are drones in the sky watching over the ocean. We have lifeguards on board our waverunners to watch over the water,” said Kawasaki, referring to a commercial brand of private watercraft that rival jet skis. bottom.
The first incident of shark bites in the recent frenzy occurred on Monday, when a 15-year-old girl was reportedly bitten on the leg by a shark while swimming at Robert Moses Beach on Long Island. Another 15-year-old had his leg bitten while surfing off neighboring Fire Island. CNN reported.
A 49-year-old man was bitten on his hand while swimming on Fire Island on Tuesday. News 12 reported.
In another incident, a 47-year-old man was reportedly bitten on the knee at Quogue Village Beach, a public beach further east on Long Island toward the Hamptons. No sharks were seen, but officials said the bite marks were likely from large marine animals.
Officials say shark bites have become more common in recent years. Last year, eight people reported being bitten by a shark near a Long Island beach.
“I’ve already been stabbed five times this year,” Gorman said, adding that “the season is just getting started.”
But one shark expert said officials need to keep the numbers in perspective.
Greg Metzger, Chief Field Coordinator Sopho Shark Research Program Researchers in Binghamton, New York, told the Guardian that the increase in shark bites this year was “completely random” and the number of shark bites remained low.
“Out of hundreds of thousands of chances, [for shark interaction], only 5 went bad. So the chances of you encountering a shark and being at a disadvantage are very, very low,” Metzger said.
“For individuals who have experienced such interactions, it really is just a coincidence and bad luck,” he added.
Metzger also said that currently deployed surveillance technology may not be ideal for spotting sharks, and instead encourages more education about sharks for swimmers as a way to increase safety. said it does.
Research conducted by Project Sofo shows that sharks are rarely at depths shallow enough to be spotted by lifeguards.
“Ninety percent of the times that sharks can be present, they’re not in the visible water. It’s not always as effective as people think,” Metzger said, adding that seawater around Long Island is He added that in most cases it is not very transparent.
Metzger added that identifying sharks with methods like drones is extremely difficult, even for experts like him.
In recent reports, 50 sand tiger sharks found off shore Metzger said sharks on Long Island beaches were “absolutely, definitely not sharks.”
“I warn you that perception is reality. If everyone was on super high alert looking for sharks, they would encounter sharks. They might not be sharks.” He added that people can mistake dolphin fins, bird feathers and even beer bottles for sharks.
As more lifeguards are trained to spot sharks, Metzger said anyone with no shark experience should consult an expert before closing beaches or taking other steps. warned.
Metzger said public officials should take similar precautions before rolling out new initiatives.
“It is disappointing that authorities do not consult more with shark experts before making these decisions.”
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jul/08/new-york-officials-shark-attacks New York strengthens beach patrol after shark attacks | New York