Windsurfer still missing after major sea and air search
- Credit: Archant
Further searches have been launched for a windsurfer who has not been seen since Saturday afternoon.
As morning broke on Monday (November 16), he had not been seen for more than a day and a half after taking to the water in Hunstanton late on Saturday afternoon.
HM Coastguard reviewed their search plans today and launched its search for the missing man again this morning.
A spokesperson said a Coastguard fixed wing aircraft, a Coastguard helicopter from Humberside and the Cromer lifeboat was launched at about 9.55am.
Emergency services were called to the resort’s Cliff Parade just before 5.20pm on Saturday after the alarm was raised when the man failed to return home from a windsurfing trip along the nearby beach.
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The area in front of the prom is popular with both wind and kite surfers.
Police, coastguards and lifeboat crews searched the area on and around the beach throughout Saturday night using powerful torches but the man was not located.
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The operation resumed soon after first light on Sunday morning.
Lifeboat crews from Hunstanton, Wells and Skegness, assisted by aircraft and helicopters swept out to sea as far as the entrance to The Wash, along with the Chapel St Leonards and Skegness areas of the Lincolnshire coast.
Coastguards, police and volunteers from Norfolk Lowland Search and Rescue also searched beaches and harbour inlets along the estuary between King’s Lynn and Wells as the tide went out.
Hunstanton RNLI sent out lifeboats when the report was first raised on Saturday evening, with its search continuing again on Sunday morning to around lunchtime.
A spokesperson said: “There’s only so much we could search at high-tide and it was too windy to use the hovercraft.
“The operation was massive.”
At times, the operation was hampered by heavy rain. While the weather had improved by Sunday afternoon, strong south-westerly winds were forecast to continue on the coast.
The missing man, who has not yet been named, is thought to have entered the water near Hunstanton Sailing Club just before 2pm on Saturday.
Police are asking for anyone who may have seen the windsurfer to get in contact.
The man is believed to have been wearing a black wetsuit, and using a surfboard with a red and white sail.
He is described as white and having distinctive, long, blond hair.
Anyone who may have seen the windsurfer, or anyone with information is asked to contact Norfolk police on 101, quoting call number 313 of Saturday, November 14.