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Great White Shark "the size of a car" shuts down Australia beaches for 7 straight days

A shark of this size could “bite a person in half,” a beach inspector said.

File photo.
File photo.
Image: Shutterstock/Sergey Uryadnikov

BEACHES ON AUSTRALIA’s east coast have been closed for a record seventh day after repeated sightings of a giant great white shark.

The shark, which is estimated to be 5 metres in length and weigh 1.7 tons (3,750 pounds), is the largest ever seen around Newcastle beaches, the city council said in a statement.

Newcastle is a city about 160km north of Sydney. The shark has been spotted in an area stretching up to 10km.

A shark of this size could “bite a person in half,” a beach inspector told Australian Associated Press (AAP).

“You don’t get a second chance with these things,” he added.

The animal was first seen on Saturday at Merewether Beach, the website writes.

Source: PA

Meanwhile, in a report this morning the Sydney Morning Herald says several massive sharks were seen feeding on dolphins off two of Newcastle’s beaches.

Further north, a shark “as big as a car” devouring a dolphin off ‘Nobbys Beach’ the paper reports.

Sharks don’t generally target people, but such attacks do happen.

“It is not safe for board riders to be out in the water, even close to shore, as sharks are known to move into the surf zone, hunting prey between where the surf breaks and the shoreline,” Newcastle City Council warns.

In an alert, the council said it was unusual for a shark to hang around the same coastal areas for so many days in a row, but did not give an indication why this may be the case.

The AAP suggests that “overcast and warm weather combined with increased marine activity could be responsible for the shark’s prolonged presence”.

The city council is continuing to patrol the waters throughout the day with jet skis, but said they need at least a 24-hour period of no sightings before beaches can be reopened to swimmers.

— Dina Spector for Business Insider, with reporting by Daragh Brophy. 

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