Four lifeboats search for casualty between Whitby and Scarborough

Whitby's all-weather lifeboat.
Whitby's all-weather lifeboat.

A major search and rescue operation was launched off the North Yorkshire coast earlier today after reports there was a man out at sea.

Crews were paged around 11.30am after reports came in that a casualty was in the water a few miles north of Scarborough.

Shortly before noon, the inshore and all-weather lifeboats from both Whitby and Scarborough ports sped to a point close to shore, north of Hayburn Wyke.

The casualty was recovered from the water by Scarborough’s inshore lifeboat and transferred to the Shannon lifeboat with the help of Whitby’s inshore lifeboat.

He was then winched aboard the coastguard rescue helicopter, which airlifted him to James Cook Hospital in Middlesbrough.

The lifeboats were stood down and returned to their stations.

Howard Fields, Whitby Lifeboat Coxswain, said: '"The RNLI crews and coastguard helicopter responded quickly and worked together to ensure the casualty was transferred to hospital as quickly and efficiently as possible".

He added if you see anyone injured or in distress on the coast, dial 999 and ask for the coastguard.