Men bailed after river rescue drama

TWO men are on police bail after what is believed to be a drunken prank ended in a two-hour river rescue on the Deben.

Colin Adwent

TWO men are on police bail after what is believed to be a drunken prank ended in a two-hour river rescue on the Deben.

The pair had to be taken off a yacht after abandoning the dinghy they were in as it began to sink.

The men, who are from Felixstowe, were said to have been in the water before scrambling to the nearby yacht where emergency services found them following their telephone call for help

Coastguards, police, paramedics and the RAF helicopter from Wattisham were sent to carry out the early morning rescue at Woodbridge.

It is believed the men got into difficulties around 12.15am on Sunday after going out in a dinghy which had been moored at the rear wall of Deben Yacht Club.

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Once on the river, the boat began to take on water and started to sink.

Somehow the men managed to get themselves out of the water and on to a yacht which was close by.

A spokesman for Thames Coastguard said: “Felixstowe Coastguard and RAF Helicopter R125 assisted two males who had become stranded on a yacht in the river Deben after their dinghy had started to sink.

“The yacht was located by Felixstowe Coastguard and casualties transferred ashore to a waiting ambulance crew and police.”

The rescue helicopter landed on Kingston playing field near The Avenue around 2.30am where police and paramedics had been sent to wait for them.

A spokeswoman for the East of England Ambulance NHS Trust said although the men were checked over by an ambulance crew they did not require hospital treatment.

However, police at the scene arrested the pair on suspicion of stealing the dinghy.

Anne-Marie Breach, of Suffolk Police said: “Coastguards called police after emergency calls about two males who were in the water.

“Their dinghy started to take on water and sink. They managed to get to a nearby boat and were then rescued by a helicopter.

“Two people were detained on suspicion of taking a conveyance other than a motor vehicle.”

A 24-year-old man and a 27-year-old man, both from Felixstowe were taken to Ipswich police station after the incident for questioning.

The men were released on police bail and must return to Ipswich police station on October 21.