Less than two weeks after a swimmer was attacked by a shark being reeled in by a fisherman near the Manhattan Beach Pier, the local City Council met Tuesday night to hear from residents on the possibility of extending a temporary ban on fishing in the area.
A 60-day fishing ban was implemented on July 7 to allow city officials to consult with other agencies about the safety of fishing off a pier.
Heavy debate was sparked after an experienced swimmer was attacked near the Manhattan Beach pier by a shark after the animal had been hooked by a fisherman and spent 30 to 40 minutes fighting him off on July 5.
Long-distance swimmer Steve Robles was treated for injuries to his right hand and torso area and released from the hospital the night of the attack.
Although Robles said the incident was a rare occurrence, he was shocked and frustrated by the fisherman’s actions.
Robles attended Tuesday’s meeting and was able to meet for the first time the man who helped rescue him after he was attacked.
At the meeting, the council agreed to take their request to extend the fishing ban to the Coastal Commission.
The city does not have the legal authority to ban fishing, but council members said they were considering adopting new restrictions aimed at reducing the risks to swimmers and other beachgoers.
The city council also requested that the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office investigate possible charges against the fisherman who hooked the shark.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) flew a banner over the pier early Tuesday that stated, “keep hookers off the pier! ban fishing.”