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Rescuers on Hawaii’s Big Island called off efforts to recover a body on Sunday after a large tiger shark was spotted circling the body, according to local media reports.
Hawaii County fire officials said a helicopter was dispatched from Waiakea Rescue Station after the body was seen floating roughly 30 yards away from the cliffs of North Kohala, on the northernmost part of the island, Big Island Now reports.
Rescuers tried to recover the body using a special ocean rescue net, but ultimately failed, Big Island Now reports.
“In the process of putting a Fire Rescue Specialist in the Billy Pugh net to recover the body, a bystander reported that a shark had submerged the body and it was no longer visible,” said the county fire department, Hawaii News Now reports.
The helicopter remained at the scene to continue searching from the air, but the body wasn’t seen again, KITV reports.
Attempts to recover the body began around 11 a.m. and lasted until 3 p.m., the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports. Officials said they found possessions they think belonged to the person on a nearby cliff, including a backpack, according to the newspaper.
The person’s name has not been released, “pending the notification of next of kin,” KITV reports.