Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Three arrested after 'violent' boat collision off Cowes

Loose Cannon Image copyright Island Echo
Image caption The 6m (20ft) vessel Loose Cannon suffered serious damage in the early hours

Three men have been arrested on suspicion of drugs offences after a small boat was involved in "violent collision" in a harbour.

One man was reported missing off Cowes, Isle of Wight, at about 03:00 BST, sparking a sea search by a coastguard helicopter and two lifeboats.

The search was called off two hours later after the man was found ashore, the RNLI said.

One man remains in hospital with serious chest injuries.

Hampshire Constabulary is investigating the crash, involving the 6m (20ft) vessel, named the Loose Cannon.

'Dazed man'

Police said a 39-year-old from Waterlooville, Hampshire, had been arrested on suspicion of possession of a controlled Class-B drug and being concerned in the supply of drugs.

A 34-year-old, from Southsea, and a man, aged 39 from Petersfield, have also been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of drugs.

The RNLI said the fishing or leisure craft was badly damaged in a collision with an obstruction in Cowes Harbour and then floated down with the tide to Trinity Landing.

A Cowes pub owner said her staff found the boat at the landing after being alerted by a man who appeared "dazed".

Image copyright Island Echo
Image caption The RNLI said the fishing or leisure boat collided with an obstruction in Cowes Harbour

Anne Cook, from the Vectis Tavern, said: "We were tidying up at the end of the night when a man came in bleeding from the head saying that their boat had crashed and there was someone on it with a broken back and it was sinking."

Ms Cook said the man could not give the boat's location, but her staff managed to find it after a "long" search of several jetties.

A spokesman for Isle of Wight NHS Trust said: "The ambulance service responded overnight to an incident in Cowes harbour. Three males were conveyed to St. Mary's Hospital.

"Two of the patients have been discharged. The third patient, who has chest injuries, is stable but may need to be transferred off the island to another hospital."

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites