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Rockaway Beach reopens amid heatwave after shark fears

Thousands of New Yorkers flocked to recently shark-infested Rockaway Beach to cool off on Sunday as temperatures soared to a muggy 94 degrees during the ongoing heatwave.

Swimming has reopened on the Scenester shore in Queens amid the summer heat after a shark scare closed the beach on Saturday.

Brave beachgoers took a refreshing dip – keeping an eye out for the man-eaters in light of Saturday’s shark sightings and a recent spate of local attacks.

“It just makes me a little wary of the water,” said Frieda Guiden, 32, of The Bronx, who took a dip with her 5-year-old daughter.

“I just pay more attention to the kids, not just my kid, but all the kids around me.”

Another swimmer, Linda from East Elmhurst, described a method to avoid being eaten at the hotspot.

“That’s the thing: I don’t go deep in unless there are people in front of me, so if there’s a shark — no offense — it gets them first,” she said.

Roman Kholoshnetska, 30, with his son and wife Dennis Kholoshnetska, 5, and Helen Kholoshnetska, 28.
At 3:30 p.m. Sunday, sky-high temperatures were forecast to possibly match the city’s record 97 degrees in 2010.
Gabriella Bass

“So I need to have people around me when I go deep. When I’m alone, I don’t go deep.”

Others packed Big Apple’s hipster Rivera to beat the heat with tents outfitted with hammocks, umbrellas and coolers full of drinks.

“I would take off my skin if I could, but instead I put on a bathing suit and go to the beach,” said Jocelyn Clark, 20, of Bushwick.

Beach goers stand on the shore.
A Rockaway Beach lifeguard said he saw a shark fin “quite close” to shore on Saturday.
Gabriella Bass

“It’s just too hot for me. But when I go outside it has to be in close proximity to the water.”

Sunday was the sixth day of a sweltering heatwave that sent temperatures across the city into the mid-90s.

Sky-high temperatures were set to match the city’s record 97 degrees in 2010, but stopped rising around 3 p.m. as some clouds rolled in, FOX Weather meteorologist Marissa Lautenbacher told The Post.

A girl digs a hole in the sand.
At least six people have been bitten by sharks on Long Island in the past month.
Gabriella Bass

“Some clouds came up and protected the city from the most intense rays,” she said.

The extreme humidity still set off an oppressive hiss that made the city feel at over 100 degrees.

“It’s really uncomfortable out there, the air feels like soup,” said Lautenbacher.

Linda swims in the water/
Linda, from East Elmhurst, said she would not go deep in the water unless other bathers were around.
Gabriella Bass

But the scorching heat is expected to break on Monday, which is expected to be cloudy with a high of 89 and a low of 82 degrees, she said.

“It’s going to feel a lot more comfortable, with less of that soupy feeling,” Lautenbacher said, adding that a cold front will arrive Sunday night. “Your body will have a much easier time cooling down.”

Tuesday is expected to be even cooler with a high of 86 and a low of 72, she said.

People splash in the waves.
Sunday was the sixth day of a sweltering heatwave that sent temperatures around the city skyrocketing into the mid-90s.
Gabriella Bass

On Saturday, the Parks Department closed Rockaway Beach for swimming on one of the hottest days of the year, citing “multiple sightings” of sharks.

“Yesterday we saw the fin and asked everyone to come in. It actually came pretty close,” a Rockaway Beach lifeguard told the Post Sunday.

“Usually we see dolphins, but they’re really far away and you usually see them diving. On a shark, they have a more pointed fin,” he said. “If we see one, we’ll clear the beach for 30 minutes to an hour, and if there’s no further sighting, we’ll let people back in.”

Some were reluctant to take a dip on Sunday after at least six people – including surfers and swimmers and swimmers – were bitten by sharks on Long Island last month.

https://nypost.com/2022/07/24/rockaway-beach-reopens-amid-heat-wave-after-shark-scare/ Rockaway Beach reopens amid heatwave after shark fears

JACLYN DIAZ

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