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Great white shark sighting confirmed near Bailey Island, Maine Marine Patrol says

The Maine Marine Patrol continues to urge people to avoid schooling fish and seals, which are prey for sharks.
The Maine Marine Patrol continues to urge people to avoid schooling fish and seals, which are prey for sharks.
The Maine Marine Patrol continues to urge people to avoid schooling fish and seals, which are prey for sharks.(WMTW)
Published: Jul. 31, 2020 at 4:33 PM EDT
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HARPSWELL, Maine (WMTW) - The Maine Marine Patrol said Friday there was a confirmed great white shark sighting in the same area where a swimmer was killed on Monday.

Officials said the shark was spotted near Pond Island Ledges, which is east of Bailey Island.

“We have notified the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry which has jurisdiction over nearby state beaches and parks,” said Major Rob Beal said. “We are recommending that people in Harpswell and surrounding communities exercise caution while recreating around the water.”

Julie Dimperio Holowach, 63, of New York City, was swimming with her daughter about 20 yards off of Bailey Island on Monday when she was attacked by a great white shark.

Kayakers helped bring Holowach to shore, but she died of her injuries. Her daughter was not hurt.

The Maine Marine Patrol continues to urge people to avoid schooling fish and seals, which are prey for sharks.

“We also ask anyone who observes a shark to notify Marine Patrol immediately and to provide location information as well as photos if possible,” Beal said.

The Maine Marine Patrol will continue to monitor for sharks off the coast of Maine, Maine Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher said.

“The reports we’ve received of sharks, combined with more observations of seals with injuries that are consistent with shark bites, plus data that confirms that sharks are active within the Gulf of Maine from Massachusetts to Nova Scotia means we will continue to emphasize caution for anyone recreating in and on our coastal waters for the remainder of the summer,” Keliher said.

Reid, Popham Beach, Crescent Beach and Ferry Beach state parks are only allowing swimmers to go into the water up to their waists out of an abundance of caution.

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