Belfast Telegraph

Divers search for missing angler

Naval dive teams are searching for an angler who fell into the Atlantic off Valentia Island.

A search resumed at 6am on Friday morning for the fisherman who was seen slipping into the water Thursday night. The man was among a party of seven who were fishing at Culloo Rock on the north side of the island in Co Kerry.

Efforts were made to save him when he fell at around 10.30pm but he disappeared after 10 minutes in the sea.

Valentia Lifeboat Station attended the scene and searched the area until 3am.

Lifeboat operations manager Richard Foran said the area is notorious for people losing their lives.

"It's a fantastic fishing, spot but the problem is it is exposed to the Atlantic," said Mr Foran. "In bad weather conditions it can be absolutely treacherous but that was not the scenario last night. The poor man just fell in."

Mr Foran said conditions in the water were calm Thursday night, when the Valentia Lifeboat and the Shannon Coast Guard helicopter started the search.

Meanwhile, Irish Coast Guard spokesman John Draper insisted every effort would be made to find the angler, who is not local to the area. He said the Coast Guard had requested help from the Navy Service and that dive teams were mobilising Friday morning.

Mr Draper said the divers were likely to be in the water by Friday afternoon.

"Weather conditions are reasonable enough today to conduct a dive," said Mr Draper. "All we can say is we will continue to search for this man with all our resources."

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From Belfast Telegraph