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Shark Sightings Prompt Oceanside Beach Closure

The photo shows big waves by the Oceanside Pier, July 12, 2017.

Photo by Alison St John

Above: The photo shows big waves by the Oceanside Pier, July 12, 2017.

A spate of sightings of a roughly 12-foot shark near Oceanside Municipal Pier Friday afternoon prompted a temporary closure of a two-mile stretch of beach in the area.

Fishermen on boats began spotting the sea predator 100 to 500 yards from shore about 12:30 p.m., city lifeguard Sgt. Gregory Trebbe said. Soon, about a half-dozen sightings had been reported.

RELATED: DNA Evidence Confirms Great White Shark Attacked Boy At Encinitas Beach

As a public-safety precaution, lifeguards cleared everyone out of the surf a mile to the north and south of the pier, made announcements to beachgoers about the closure and posted signs along the shoreline in the affected area.

On the rare occasions when sharks are sighted off the coast of Oceanside, they "are typically just passing through our waters," posing no active threats to swimmers and surfers, Trebbe noted.

"Barring any other reports or incidents, the water will reopen (Saturday) morning," he said.

It was unclear what type of shark was cruising in the area.

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