Two fishermen are missing after their boat sank off the Sussex coast

Desperate hunt for two fishermen missing at sea after their boat sank off the Sussex coast – as one crew member is pulled from the water alive

  • A distress beacon from the Joanna C began broadcasting at 6am Saturday 
  • The EPIRB  automatically broadcasts if a vessel sinks showing its last location 
  • One crew member from the Joanna C was found by the RNLI clinging to a buoy
  • The RNLI, Coastguard and local fishermen are continuing the search for the men 

One man has been pulled from the water and two are still missing after a fishing boat sank off the coast of East Sussex.

HM Coastguard scrambled a search and rescue helicopter after receiving an EPIRB distress beacon from fishing vessel Joanna C at 6am on Saturday.

The rescue helicopter based at Lydd, Kent, was deployed along with two RNLI lifeboats based in Newhaven and Eastbourne to try to find the missing boat.

The RNLI is involved in a major search and rescue operation after a fishing boat with three crew sank at 6am off the East Sussex coast

A distress beacon on board the Joanna C, pictured, began broadcasting this morning three miles from Seaford, near Newhaven

The RNLI confirmed one man was rescued after he was found clinging to a lifebuoy. He has been transferred to hospital for treatment 

The beacon’s signal put the vessel three nautical miles off the coast of Seaford, near Newhaven.

In an update at 10.30am, HM Coastguard said one man had been rescued from the water by the Newhaven RNLI lifeboat and has been transferred to hospital.

He was found clinging to a lifebuoy.

The Joanna C is a 45ft scalloping vessel registered in Brixham, the Coastguard said, and three people were aboard when it sank.

The search continues for the two missing crewmen.

As well as the RNLI lifeboats, the Birling Gap Coastguard Rescue Team is checking for sightings from the shore.

Local fishing vessels have also joined the search for the missing crew members who were onboard the scallop fishing boat which sank at 6am today

Another fishing vessel close to the area is helping with the search, while the Coastguard rescue helicopter based in the Solent has been deployed to relieve the Kent-based aircraft.

HM Coastguard controller Piers Stanbury said: ‘Thankfully one of the three people on board at the time of sinking has been pulled out of the water and brought to shore by the Newhaven RNLI lifeboat but the intensive air and sea search for the two missing crew continues.

‘Debris has been located close to the location of the EPIRB alert location but no life raft has been found as yet.’

The coastguard confirmed debris has been found near where the EPIRB distress beacon began broadcasting. As well as the RNLI, Coastguard helicopters have been searching the area. As of yet, there has been no sign of a life raft

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