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JAWS SPOTTINGS: Hanalei Bay Closed Due To Shark Sightings

| posted on July 22, 2010

Hundreds of dead fish littered the sand, behemoth tiger sharks trolled the waters nearby, and signs warned to stay out of the water. The apocalyptic atmosphere seemed lifted straight from the Old Testament. “Uhh…err…I’m over it. I think I’ll surf tomorrow” was a common quote uttered this past weekend in Hanalei Bay on Kauai’s North Shore. There have been number of tiger shark sightings due to an onslaught of dead and dying fish in the water as a result of a local fishing boat spilling massive amounts of cargo near shore. In response, County officials opted to go the safe route and close off Hanalei Bay Saturday afternoon and all of Sunday this past weekend.

According to a report on Kauaiworld.com, “One lifeguard working the area said there was a sighting of a shark at least 10 feet long close to the Hanalei Pier, and at least two more out in the middle of the bay Saturday afternoon.” Despite its appeal, the island of Kauai has had a violent history with shark attacks. A number of the island’s residents and a few standout performers—the most prominent being Bethany Hamilton—have been attacked and subsequently lost limbs to sharks. But for many, dealing with the creatures is just a part of everyday life.

Local pro surfer Evan Valiere laughed at the event. “Yeah, when I was walking down to the beach I saw the signs and all of the dead fish in the water…but we just went out and taught our surf lesson anyway.”