NYC closes Rockaway beaches after shark sightings

The shark sightings come after previous encounters, beach closures

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New York City closed area beaches due to additional shark sightings on Tuesday. 

In a tweet, the New York Police Department's 100th Precinct wrote that "ALL of the Rockaway beaches" were closed for swimming due to the sightings in the mid-afternoon. 

The boardwalk was left open and, just a few hours later, Rockaway Beach reopened.

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People enjoy the water at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York.

People enjoy the water at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

According to The Wave – a local newspaper – a park department enforcement officer and beachgoers at Beach 67th Street said two sharks were spotted and at least one "allegedly ‘bumped’ a swimmer.'"

It said that aerial surveillance was being conducted following the sightings.

Gothamist received a similar report from a city lifeguard, who reportedly said the shark bumped into his board

A man surfs at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York.

A man surfs at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Long Island's Jones Beach, East Atlantic Beach and all Hempstead beaches were also closed due to sightings, according to PIX11.

The sightings come after previous encounters and closures in the region. 

MORE SHARK SIGHTINGS CLOSE EAST COAST BEACHES

A New York Police Department helicopter patrols the shoreline at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York.

A New York Police Department helicopter patrols the shoreline at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Earlier this week, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul ordered state agencies to increase surveillance off Long Island, including the use of drone and helicopter monitoring. 

Lifeguard staffing will be increased by 25% and Park Police patrol boats and New York State Police helicopter patrols will search ocean waters.

People enjoy the water at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York.

People enjoy the water at Rockaway Beach, Tuesday, July 19, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

"As New Yorkers and visitors alike head to our beautiful Long Island beaches to enjoy the summer, our top priority is their safety," the governor said in a Monday release. "We are taking action to expand patrols for sharks and protect beachgoers from potentially dangerous situations. I encourage all New Yorkers to listen to local authorities and take precautions to help ensure safe and responsible beach trips this summer."

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Scientists cite warming ocean temperatures and a resurgence of bunker fish for the shift in sightings. Experts say the increase in the number of sharks is a sign that conservation efforts have been successful.