A temporary ban on pier fishing in the City of Manhattan Beach has been extended for up to 60 days. According to City Manager Mark Danaj, Monday’s extension will allow state fish and wildlife officials, local agencies, and city leaders more time to study a recent shark attack, as well as the overall threat to humans in the water.
On Saturday, July 5, a long-distance swimmer was attacked by a 7-foot shark near the Manhattan Beach Pier. It was soon learned that fishermen had ensnared the shark, causing it to panic.
“He was trying to get off the line,” said lifeguard Tracy Lizotte. “He was agitated and was probably biting everything in his way and then the swimmer swam right into the shark’s line.”
A moratorium on pier fishing was soon imposed after the incident, but was set to expire Tuesday. On the same day as the extension, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) petitioned the city to ban pier fishing permanently.
“As this incident demonstrates, fishing in a populated area increases the risk that sharks will bite humans, whom they are otherwise uninterested in as prey,” PETA said in its letter to Mayor Amy Thomas Howorth.
The victim of the attack, Steven Robles, suffered moderate to severe injuries but is now recovering. Authorities said they have no plans to cite or arrest the fisherman.
Read more about the extended pier fishing ban here.