Helicopter and flares used in search after man threatens to jump off pier

The operation was launched after reports of a man entering the water from the old North Pier. Image copyright Google Maps.
The operation was launched after reports of a man entering the water from the old North Pier. Image copyright Google Maps.

A sea and shoreline search was launched after concerns a man had gone into the North Sea off a Sunderland pier.

Sunderland's RNLI and Coastguard teams joined Northumbria Police officers and members of South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade after the call out at 11pm yesterday.

Members of the emergency services on the shoreline during the search, pictured by Sunderland RNLI.

Members of the emergency services on the shoreline during the search, pictured by Sunderland RNLI.

It followed reports of a man who might have entered the water from the old North Pier, close to Sunderland Yacht Club.

The police helicopter was also drafted in to help, with a search area of half a mile outside the South Pier and Roker Pier and up to 1 mile offshore covered.

The RNLI's volunteers set off a number of white parachute flares to help illuminate the areas being checked, with two of its inshore boats used in the operation.

The Coastguard team also carried out a shoreline search.

A Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team spokesman said: "With no sightings of the person all teams were stood down."

The RNLI has ask anyone who has any further information about this incident or the reported person potentially entering the water to contact Northumbria Police on 101.

The Samaritans can be contacted around the clock by calling 116 123 or emailed via jo@samaritans.org.