Happy Shark Week!

Everyone's favorite week of the summer is back! Discovery Channel's acclaimed celebration for one the ocean's most popular predator has officially launched for 2021. In celebration of its return, we've decided to examine some of the gnarliest shark attacks to have taken place around our neck of the woods, South Jersey; more specifically, Ocean City.

Do you suffer from galeophobia? That's, you guessed it, the scientific name for a fear of sharks. If that's what stops you in your tracks on your trek down to the waterline, just know that you have a higher chance of getting struck by lightening than you do of getting bit by a shark.

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While shark attacks are pretty rare here in NJ, they do happen once in a blue moon. The most gruesome shark attack occurred back in 1960 when a man named Richard Chung who was swimming quite a few miles off of the 6th Street beach had a shark mistake his leg for an appetizer. The shark bit his leg and swam off, and Chung had to make his way back to the beach as his leg was streaming blood. Luckily, boaters within the area spotted the attack as well as a man who spotted the whole thing from the boardwalk with his binoculars. Chung luckily did not lose his leg, but underwent several blood transfusions and had to get quite a few stitches.

The next known shark attack happened in the year 1980 when a 15-year-old felt something bite him while he was wading in Ocean City waters one afternoon. He wasn't even out too deep, but he emerged from the water with a bite mark on his back. It was later determined by multiple examinations that the only animal that could match the bite marks would be a shark. He was treated for the bite and released the same day, so his injuries couldn't have been too detrimental.

The fear of sharks is understandable, but you don't have to worry about them too much off of Jersey's coast. To make sure you're prepared for the extremely rare chance encounter, check out these tips HERE.

Sources: OCNJDaily.com, FloridaPanhandle.com

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