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Massachusetts shark: Great White shark in Mass. prompts panicked ocean evac

A Great White shark was spotted by the Massachusetts State Police Air Wing Monday, out doing a routine patrol fly-over near the Duxbury coast. The 12 to 14 foot shark was seen approximately 75 to 100 yards out, prompting an immediate water evacuation.

According to reports, and as seen in the video, air crew troopers notified Duxbury Police and the Duxbury Harbormaster, who initiated the water evacuation. Hundreds of beachgoers were in the ocean at the time. As a precaution, the beach remained closed for an hour, until officials who were tracking the shark reported that it had left the area and moved southeast into deeper water.

No injuries reported during the evacuation. Over 1,000 people had to be pulled from the water.

“The air crew, Troopers Mark Spencer, Edward Mathurin and Eric Fairchild notified Duxbury Police and Duxbury Harbormaster immediately. There were many beachgoers and people in the water on the Duxbury Beach,” state police said with the video's upload.

“It is rather infrequent for us to see a shark within 75 yards in that area,” said state Trooper Dustin Fitch.

Reports CNN: “Steve Cameron, Duxbury's assistant harbormaster, said it was an unusual sighting since the sharks are usually on the outer cape and not on the inside. As the harbormaster boats were approaching the area, the shark swam southeast into deeper water, Fitch said.”

In the Cape Cod area, the presence of grey seals on the isolated shoreline beaches serves as attractive bait to Great Whites. The area is no stranger to sharks – in nearby Martha’s Vineyard, scenes for the 1975 thriller “Jaws” were filmed.