When a hurricane takes place, bringing in major flooding, people jump on social media to start sharing the fake shark photos. Hurricane Harvey has been no exception. Shortly after the waters started rising in Texas, the shark swimming down the freeway photos started emerging online. Like always, these photos are just a hoax, and are not real.
Twitter user Jacob Michaels was one of the first to share a photo of a shark, which was supposedly swimming through Houston. Michaels captioned the photo by saying, “Believe it or not, this is a shark on the freeway in Houston, Texas.
#HurricaneHarvy.” The picture was posted at 11:00 pm on Sunday. Since then, it has been retweeted 34,073 times and liked 44,786 times.
According to Snopes, who quickly debunked the picture and confirmed it was a hoax, the picture first appeared on social media in August 2011 after a hurricane hit Puerto Rico.
“This picture was taken in Puerto Rico shortly after Hurricane Irene ravaged the island,” the original caption to the photo read. “Yes, that’s a shark swimming down the street next to a car, and this is exactly why authorities in NYC are warning people not to go swimming in flood waters after a hurricane. Sharks go where fish go, and fish go where water goes, and if that water (and those subsequent fish) happen to be right outside your front door, then guess where that freakin’ shark’s going to be?!”
— Jason Michael (@Jeggit) August 28, 2017
Since 2011, the fake shark photo has reappeared during many of the major events that caused heavy flooding throughout the United States. In 2015, social media users started sharing the photo following flooding in Houston, and then again after Hurricane Matthew caused major flooding in Florida in October 2016.
The 'shark on the freeway' hoax has been going since 2011, and still got 27,540 retweets today. pic.twitter.com/A5nvrSHCUU
— dan barker (@danbarker) August 28, 2017
According to a previous report by the Inquisitr, earlier this week, a photo of a group of senior citizens trapped in a nursing home during Hurricane Harvey went viral. Many people thought the photo was fake, however it was later determined to be real. Luckily, the attention the photo received led to an emergency evacuation of the nursing home, and everyone was safely rescued.
[Featured Image by Martin Prochazkacz/Shutterstock]