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Air and sea search in Solent for missing men

Lifeboats News Release

An incident in which a jet-ski rider and a man water-skiing behind ended up in the water sparked a cross-Solent rescue operation this evening.

A jet-ski involved in an incident in which the rider and his waterskier ended up in the Solent is being towed to Hillhead by Cowes lifeboat.

RNLI/George Chastney

The runaway jet-ski is under tow by the lifeboat.

Involved were Cowes RNLI lifeboat, a Coastguard helicopter, a Southampton Harbour launch and on-shore Coastguards at Hillhead.

It appeared that the man on the jet-ski, and then the water-skiier, ended up in the water; But the driver-less jet-ski carried on, only to be finally captured by a Southampton harbour launch.

Concern that the two men were unaccounted for then led to an air and sea search, which finally ended when both men managed to safely swim ashore at Hillhead. The men also got their runaway jet-ski back, when it was towed to the shore by the lifeboat.

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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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