A large scale search is underway north of East Cowes this evening (Friday) with 3 lifeboats and a rescue helicopter in the area.

HM Coastguard were alerted to an incident developing north of East Cowes around 10.30pm and saw the task of Cowes Inshore Lifeboat, Bembridge Inshore Lifeboat, Bembridge All Weather Lifeboat, Rescue 175 helicopter and several local inshore rescue teams.

The Isle of Wight Ambulance Service and Police are also on hand along the East Cowes Esplanade.

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Crews search for water, believed to be for one person.

The Coastguard helicopter is currently searching near Old Castle Point.

The 3 RNLI lifeboats search the shore to locate the potential person(s) in the water.

2 of 4 flares triggered by lifeboat

UPDATE 23:55 – A number of parachute flares are fired into the air by one of the lifeboats in hopes of illuminating the area and locating victims in the water.

Red Funnel’s car ferry, the Red Eagle, helps by using its searchlights from the ferry as it approaches the dock at East Cowes.

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UPDATE 00:15 – All resources have been removed from the incident, with crews returning to their home stations.

If you or someone else is in trouble on the coast or at sea, or if you spot what you think is unexploded ordnance, call 999 and ask for the Coast Guard. Further safety information is available at https://coastguardsafety.campaign.gov.uk/.

Get help faster by giving emergency services your exact location using ///what3words.

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what3words has divided the world into 3m squares and given each square a unique combination of three words which means that when you are in a remote area of ​​the Isle of Wight you can get much more help quickly without the need for local knowledge.

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