Sussex

Father swept to sea at Selsey after kayak capsizes

Selsey Lifeboat
Image caption The father was rescued from the sea off Selsey Bill by the RNLI lifeboat

A kayaker was swept out to sea off West Sussex after he and his daughter fell in when the vessel capsized.

A spokesman for Selsey RNLI said the lifeboat and a coastguard helicopter were at the scene at 14:54 on Friday.

The teenage girl managed to swim to shore. The father tried to cling to the kayak but was swept away round the Bill Point in choppy conditions.

He was rescued by the lifeboat crew but was distressed, exhausted and close to drowning, the spokesman said.

"If he had been in the water any longer, he may well have drowned," he said.

"We have had drownings in that position before."

Recovering well

The man was given first aid and oxygen at the lifeboat station and father and daughter were taken by ambulance to St Richard's Hospital at Chichester as a precaution.

Both were said to be shaken but recovering well.

Coxswain Martin Rudwick said the pair, who were from the local area, were wearing life jackets but they were the wrong type for kayaking and failed to inflate.

"This incident highlights the need to use the correct equipment according to the circumstances." he said.

"Both casualties were under a false illusion that they would be safe wearing these life jackets in a kayak."

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