Following a concerning shark attack on Monday evening, officials have closed Rockaway Beach for Tuesday. The incident took place near Beach 59th Street and Rockaway Beach around 6 p.m., where a woman, possibly surfing, was bitten near the shore.
The woman, a Queens resident in her 60s, is currently at Jamaica Hospital and is described as being in serious yet stable condition.
To enhance safety, the Parks Department is collaborating with the NYPD and FDNY to increase drone monitoring. While no sharks were spotted following the incident, it has undeniably alarmed regular beach visitors.
“Everybody was leaving the beach and they were just like, ‘Don’t get in the water,’ and I was like, ‘What happened?’ Somebody got bit by a shark,” one beachgoer said.
Shark sightings in New York City are typically rare, but sharks have been swimming closer to shore in recent years with cleaner water and warmer temperatures. More than a dozen sharks have been tagged off the coasts of Long Island.
Officials say Rockaway Beach will be closed to swimming and surfing on Tuesday, August 8 due to the shark activity. Parks Enforcement & NYPD will be on patrol to keep swimmers out of the water. FDNY & NYPD will be doing aerial surveillance to monitor for sharks.