Officials think hammerhead shark hanging around Ocean City is hurt, not a threat

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OCEAN CITY, Md. -- In recent weeks there have been multiple shark attacks and shark sightings at beaches all along the East Coast. In Ocean City, Maryland, authorities are keeping a close eye on a hammerhead shark spotted hanging around the shoreline since Wednesday.

"Sharks live in the ocean but we typically don't see them, and we don't see them of any size, in this close, and that's what makes this so unusual," said Butch Arbin, who is the captain of the Beach Patrol.

Arbin said the roughly seven-foot-long hammerhead shark is the second to appear in the past week. "We know of one that died earlier in the week in Fenwick Island Delaware, and then this one that we have been following the last two days, until it went into the bay yesterday," he said.

The sight of the sharks fin has been enough to get people out of the water, but not enough to keep them out.

"When they saw the shark coming they [lifeguards] moved people out of the way, not only for the protection of the people, but also for the protection of the marine life. So they moved them out, but once the shark went by they moved them back in," said Arbin.

Arbin said hammerheads aren't usually a threat to people and there's never been a shark attack in Maryland. He believes it's either injured or sick, and experts are asking people to leave it alone. "When they beach themselves they are basically committing suicide, they are not going to live long and that's what the concern was. Yesterday when it went into the inlet, it was being pushed in by the currents, so it wasn't even strong enough to fight the currents," he said.

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