Woman rescued from the sea off Berwick Pier

The stranded dredger. Picture by Martin Mears.
The stranded dredger. Picture by Martin Mears.

A woman who was found clinging to the north wall of Berwick Pier has been rescued by the crew of a dredger.

The crew of theGypsey Race, noticed the woman clinging to the wall at 8.30 this morning and made an immediate call to the Coastguard whilst going to her aid

The Coastguard requested the Berwick RNLI inshore and all weather lifeboats to launch and the Berwick Coastguard Rescue Team to attend.

By the time that the lifeboats and coastguard team arrived on scene, the crew of the dredger had managed to rescue the woman from her predicament.

The inshore lifeboat took the woman from the deck of the dredger and brought her to shore. She had been in the water for an hour and a half and was attended to by paramedics.

Unfortunately, whilst the crew of the dredger were undertaking their lifesaving activities, the Gypsey Race grounded on sand and rocks. The vessel is now stuck by the pier, awaiting the next high tide, when efforts will be made to assist her in re-floating.

Jolene Smith, HM Coastguard said: “The woman fell from Berwick Pier this morning (Sunday) when she was out for an early morning stroll, hoping to catch some photos of dolphins.

"She was in the water for about an hour and a half before the crew of the Gypsey Race noticed her in the water, clinging to the harbour wall and came to her aid. She was in a dire situation and the crew undoubtedly saved her life.

“Unfortunately for the crew of the Gypsey Race, in the act of rescuing the woman, they became an incident themselves and are now stuck on a sandbank waiting for the depth of water to increase so that they can re-float their vessel.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to remind people to take care near the water or by cliffs when taking photos. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in taking the perfect photo, forgetting that you are in a hazardous environment. As the summer comes to an end and opportunities arise to take more photos of spectacular weather conditions, please do be mindful of your own safety and don’t take unnecessary risks.”

Berwick lifeboats, posting on Facebook, added; 'Well done to the crew of the Gypsey Race assisting with the rescue of the casualty!'

*The Gypsey Race was successfully refloated this morning (Monday) with help from Berwick and Eyemouth lifeboats.