Man presumed lost after falling overboard into River Humber

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A YOUNG crewman is feared drowned after falling into the River Humber near Grimsby.

The man was reported to have gone overboard on Wednesday night, sparking a massive search involving nearly 30 vessels.

A hasty area seach was conducted by Humber and Cleethorpes lifeboats which sped to the man’s last known position 20 minutes earlier, joined from the air by the rescue helicoper from RAF Leconfield.

With no sighting of the man, and the light fast fading, Humber lifeboat organised the numerous tugs, support vessels and wind farm workboats, which had come to help, to search line-abreast in sweeps up and down the river.

The vessel involved was the Netherlands-registered cargo ship Freya, which was en route to Immingham from Drammen, Norway. John Irving, Humber RNLI Coxswain, said: “There was a superb response from vessels in the area which spent hours in a painstaking search. Some of the crews were off shift but still volunteered to come out to try to find a fellow seaman. The co-operation and dedication of all those involved is greatly appreciated.

“We were all devastated that we weren’t able to find the young man and our thoughts are very much with his friends, family and fellow crew of the Freya.”

One of the vessels involved, a catamaran work boat which services the wind farms, ran aground off Wonderland at Cleethorpes, but was refloated yesterday.