Supervisor Carpenter Reports: Town Lifeguards Keep Watchful Eye as Bathing Returns to Normal

July 20th, 2018 – Islip Town beaches remain open today with no reported shark sightings, as bathers, waders and swimmers return to ocean waters in the aftermath of two incidents earlier this week. Town of Islip lifeguards resumed their posts for the second day Friday with a heightened awareness, after two children were bit Wednesday morning by what NYSDEC determined were sand sharks in Sailor’s Haven and Atlantique. The children were treated at area hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries and released. Lifeguards are keeping a watchful eye on the ocean as the weekend draws near.

“I am so thankful to our ocean lifeguards for acting within a split second. We are grateful that the two children who were bitten are going to be fine,” said Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter.

Suffolk County Police conducted a flyover earlier this morning, with no sightings, and will continue the protocol over the weekend. In total, anglers reeled-in four sand sharks; two on Wednesday and two on Thursday. All four were returned to the ocean, in accordance with NYSDEC regulations.

A fractured tooth was recovered from one of the bite wounds and was sent to NYS DEC officials for testing. The tooth was determined late Thursday to be from a sand shark, according to officials, however they could not confirm the species. James Gilmore, Director, NYSDEC Division of Marine Resources said the sharks were likely looking for food in murky waters and this was merely “a case of mistaken identity.”

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