Sunderland RNLI slams bogus report after volunteers deal with Facebook hoax
Sunderland RNLI has hit out at hoaxers after volunteers responded to a false report of a person in the sea at Seaburn.
The rescue team received a Facebook message at 4.45am today reporting that a person had jumped into the sea at Seaburn.
The message was passed on to the UK Coastguard who coordinated an initial emergency response with Northumbria Police, but the message turned out to be a hoax.
A Sunderland RNLI spokesman said: "Shortly after 4.45am this morning our volunteers received what is now known to be hoax Facebook message reporting that a person had jumped into the sea at Seaburn.
"The messages received were immediately passed to UK Coastguard who coordinated an initial emergency response with Northumbria Police.
"Hoax calls of any kind are not only illegal, but also put other people at risk should a genuine emergency occur in a similar location while teams are responding to the hoax.
"If anyone does need to report a genuine emergency then this should be by dialling 999 and asking to speak to the most relevant emergency service."