Cornwall

Rescued Falmouth kayakers airlifted to hospital

RNAS Culdrose rescue helicopter
Image caption An RNAS Culdrose helicopter airlifted the kayakers to the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro

Two kayakers have been rescued after their boats capsized in stormy conditions in Cornwall.

The men had left Maenporth, near Falmouth, en route to the Helford River when they became separated.

Falmouth Coastguard said the alarm was raised at 1410 GMT when a flare set off by one of the kayakers was spotted by the public.

The pair, who were suffering from suspected hypothermia, were flown to the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

Their condition is not known.

RNLI lifeboats from Falmouth and a tanker were also involved in the rescue.

Experienced kayakers

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) said the rescue was carried out in heavy seas with poor visibility and with the support of the tanker Cape Daly which was anchored in Falmouth Bay.

The Falmouth inshore lifeboat found one kayaker who had capsized and was in the sea.

Minutes later the second man, whose kayak had also capsized, was found by a search and rescue helicopter from RNAS Culdrose.

Peter Bullard, MCA watch manager at Falmouth, said the men were lucky to be rescued.

"We understand they are experienced kayakers and were well equipped but they're still lucky that in such poor weather their distress flare was seen," he said.

"We always advise anyone venturing onto the sea in such challenging conditions to be realistic about their abilities."

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