Search to resume for two crew after fishing boat sinks off coast of East Sussex

One man was pulled from the water after he was found clinging to a lifebuoy.

An RNLI Lifeboat was part of the search for the two fishermen that went missing near Seaford, Sussex
An RNLI Lifeboat was part of the search for the two fishermen that went missing near Seaford, Sussex

The search for two people who are missing after a fishing boat sank off the coast of East Sussex will resume at first light on Sunday.

The Joanna C put out an emergency distress beacon on Saturday at around 6am with two RNLI lifeboats and a helicopter joining the search.

One man was pulled from the water after he was found clinging to a lifebuoy on Saturday morning and the search for the other two crew was called off at around 11pm.

The Joanna C is a 45ft scalloping vessel registered in Brixham and its last known location was three nautical miles off the coast of Seaford, near Newhaven.

Chris Thomas, deputy director of HM Coastguard, said: “HM Coastguard’s National Maritime Operations Centre has coordinated a major rescue effort (on Saturday), with many units searching tirelessly since first light and finding one casualty who has been recovered safely to hospital.

“Sadly two other crewmen have not yet been found and all our thoughts are with their families and friends.

“It is testament to the local maritime community that HM Coastguard were so admirably supported throughout the day by nearby vessels and the local fishing communities who joined us in force and made strenuous efforts to locate their colleagues during the search.

“At one point, Coastguard coordinators described tracking 14 vessels covering the search plan area including the two RNLI all weather lifeboats at sea.”

A GoFundMe page set up to support the families of the two missing men has so far raised £1,040.

Donations will be passed to the Fishermen’s Mission, a charity providing practical, emotional and financial support to fishermen and their families, who will distribute it to those affected.

Organiser Tony Rowe said on the page: “Our prayers are with those directly involved and the wider community who all have been affected in some way.”

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