Islip town reopens beaches following suspected shark attacks

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A"no swimming sign is seen near Ocean Beach on Fire Island in Islip N.Y. on Thursday. Associated Press Seth Wenig

Suffolk County police said they were investigating separate incidents which occurred less than five miles apart at Sailors Haven and Atlantique beaches, on Fire Island. "This boy just ended up falling off his boogie board in the wrong place", officials said.

First responders reportedly removed a shark's tooth from that boy's leg while dressing his wound, which is considered non-life threatening.

- A 12-year-old girl and a boy were bitten while in the ocean water off Fire Island.

According to the Press, the last shark attack on Long Island was in 1948, one of only seven in New York State since 1670, none of them fatal. Chief lifeguard Craig Amarando said the boy had puncture wounds and that a shark tooth was found inside the boy.

Beachgoers are seen at Fire Island on July 18, 2018.

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Neither incident has yet been officially confirmed as a shark attack, but Mr Levine added: "The tooth we pulled out of the kid's leg looks like a shark's tooth".

"Once we figured it out it was pretty surreal", he said.

"I saw a lot of thrashing and her trying to get to me", mom Barbara Pollina said.

Only about 10 cases of shark bites on people have ever been documented in NY state, the last one in 1948, Levine said, citing information he said was given by Islip town supervisors. Bathers were allowed to return to the water after the lifeguard sighting was confirmed to be a sandbar shark. He doubted either of Wednesday's attacks was by a shark that large. "We're seeing this as an opportunity to remind everyone that the water is attractive - its magnificent here on the south shore of Long Island, but treacherous". He said, however, that he would need to look at a better picture of the tooth to be able to make any definite assessments.

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