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10 Unconventional Uses for GPS

10

Preventing Shark Attacks

When a shark tagged with a GPS device gets too close to shore, an alarm is sent to lifeguards on duty. David Fairfield/Phtodisc/Thinkstock
When a shark tagged with a GPS device gets too close to shore, an alarm is sent to lifeguards on duty. David Fairfield/Phtodisc/Thinkstock

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Ever since the movie "Jaws" came out, beachgoers have been terrified by the idea of a great white shark showing up and taking a bite, even though such attacks actually are rare [source: Lee]. But hopefully it will ease their minds to know that nearly 50 big sharks have been tagged with GPS devices, so that an organization called OCEARCH can pinpoint each of their locations at any given moment.

When the sharks get close to shore, an alarm is sent to lifeguards, who then tell people to get out of the water. But the tagging also is yielding new information about the mysterious species' movements and behavior. For instance, researchers have learned that sharks don't only stay in cold water, as expected; some go as far the Gulf of Mexico in the summer. You can track the movements of the tagged sharks by going to the OCEARCH website [sources: Mearian, LiveViewGPS.com].

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