Tees

Inflatable kayak fisherman rescued off Redcar coast

The inflatable boat Image copyright RNLI
Image caption The man bought the kayak for £40 from a supermarket

A man has been hospitalised with hypothermia after going fishing in the North Sea on an inflatable kayak bought from a supermarket.

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) rescued the man after he capsized off the coast at Redcar on Saturday.

The man, 35, from Middlesbrough, had bought the boat for £40.

He had set out from the South Gare but was carried by the wind and tide towards the Teesside Wind Farm.

Image caption The man got into trouble at Redcar and was carried towards the offshore wind farm

He was spotted struggling by a member of the public who contacted UK Coastguard and taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough for treatment for hypothermia.

Dave Cocks, lifeboat operations manager at Redcar RNLI, said: "This could so nearly have ended as another tragedy at sea.

"While the craft may have been very inexpensive it could have cost the man his life.

"The North Sea is a dangerous place, even when the weather is as fine as we have seen in the past few days.

"The man was thrown into very cold water, he was only wearing a T-shirt and shorts and didn't have a lifejacket on.

"At one point his body temperature was measured at less than 34C (93F). He was suffering from hypothermia and was becoming very weak.

"If he'd got into difficulties and he hadn't been found he may not have been able to save himself."

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