Police have identified the body of a man found in the River Wear.
The man was discovered in the water near to Bonemill Lane, in Fatfield, Washington.
He has been identified as a 72 -year-old man from Durham, but has not yet been named. It is not yet known why he was in the river.
Police officers rushed to the scene after getting reports of a man in the water shortly after midday on Thursday.
After he was pulled out of the river, paramedics gave the man first aid before he was put in an ambulance and rushed to Sunderland Royal Hospital for treatment.
But he was later pronounced dead.
A 43-year-old Fatfield man, who regularly fishes in the stretch of the Wear where the man was found, said: “It’s taken many lives this river.
“In the last 10 years there must have been about eight or nine people who have died in there.
“People don’t realise, but the current is tremendous and the tide turns quickly.”
Officers have now requested CCTV footage from the pubs which line the riverside in an effort to determine what happened.
One man, who was drinking in North Biddick Social Club at the time of the incident, said: “There’s a grey car near to the river which the police have been checking out with forensic gloves on so maybe that belongs to the person who was in the water.”
A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police said that additional patrols are in the area to reassure residents and carry out inquiries.