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Man, 19, still missing after two rescued from sea

Published 24/07/2016

An RNLI lifeboat has joined a search looking for a missing person in the sea off Camber Sands
An RNLI lifeboat has joined a search looking for a missing person in the sea off Camber Sands

A 19-year-old man is still missing after he and two other swimmers got into difficulty in the sea off East Sussex.

Two men were airlifted to hospital after going into cardiac arrest during the incident at Camber Sands shortly after midday on Sunday.

The pair were transferred to William Harvey hospital in Ashford, and are in a serious but stable condition.

The RNLI was involved alongside the coastguard in the search for the missing Londoner, but a spokesman said they were stood down at around 4.20pm.

Inspector Mark Evans, of Sussex Police, said: "We are working to establish who these two men are and trace their family and friends."

He added: "It seems this has been three people who have got into trouble while swimming with the changing tides and coastline."

Police dismissed reports the men had been stung by jellyfish.

The force tweeted: "To clarify the men got into difficulty in the sea at Camber & were not stung by jellyfish as is being reported in some places."

Emma Watson was on the beach with family members including her three young children, and witnessed the rescue.

The 35-year-old care assistant, from Banstead in Surrey, said she saw people receiving first aid on the beach.

She said: "It was absolutely horrific. The kids are now absolutely traumatised."

She described conditions on the beach as very windy.

She said: "The tide was coming in rapidly, very quick. The current was very strong, it was very windy."

The coastguard confirmed at around 9.30pm that it had called off the search.

In a statement they said: "After an extensive search of the Camber Sands area and the surrounding sea, UK Coastguard has called off the search for a missing swimmer who was seen struggling in the water earlier today."

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