Belfast Telegraph

Search for woman missing at sea in Bangor scaled down

By Joanne Sweeney

A search along the Bangor coastline for a woman missing at sea has been scaled down.

No Coastguard operations or lifeboat was launched on the fourth day of searches yesterday. The PSNI, however, continued to investigate the disappearance of the unidentifed woman using its own boats and by carrying out a helicopter search of the shore.

A PSNI spokesperson would only confirm to the Belfast Telegraph last night that its search and investigations were continuing.

The identity of the missing woman has not been made public by the PSNI at the request of her family.

It is understood that the identity of the missing person is not even known to several members of the combined rescue team co-ordinated by the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC), which had been working on the search until Wednesday.

The PSNI is now taking the lead in the hunt for the woman, who it is thought entered the water at Bangor Harbour four days ago.

At one point the search involved Bangor, Portaferry, Larne and Portmuck Coastguard rescue teams, Bangor and Donaghadee RNLI lifeboats, an Irish Coastguard helicopter and Lagan Search and Rescue.

A woman's clothing was found in a bag left on the rocks after she was spotted going into the water at Bangor Harbour on Monday.

When she did not return to claim her clothes, the intensive search to locate her began.

Local reports indicate that the woman, in her early thirties, was known to visit the area regularly and was a keen and strong swimmer.

A local person said that the woman had recently suffered a bereavement.

The person added that the young woman's family were very grateful for all the search and rescue efforts.

A source in Bangor Coastguard said yesterday that all that was known was its services were no longer required.

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