Three people have died today at a popular beach in East Sussex.Emergency teams were called to reports that the victims needed urgent medical aid at Camber Sands, near Rye. Later in the afternoon, a fourth person was pulled from the water. Police have confirmed that three of those pulled from the sea had died. The tragedy happened as the beach was packed with people. One witness, Natalja Taylor, 30, who was on a day-trip with her husband, said police were driving up the beach with a loudhailer urging people to stay out of the sea.
She told the Press Association: “We were sat on a hill a bit further away and we saw three people being pulled out of the water. I think the people who rescued them were regular people, not emergency personnel. We don’t know what condition they were in … Police drove on to the beach with a loudspeaker, telling people not to go into the water until further notice. They also taped off a huge chunk of the beach so no-one could get near it.”
The alarm was first raised at about 2.15pm, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) said. Search-and-rescue helicopters were also scrambled to the scene, along with an air ambulance, as well as lifeboats.
A Sussex Police spokesman said: “One man was rescued at around 2.10pm and at around 2.20pm another person was seen in the water and was also rescued. A third person was rescued at 2.35pm. The three men, who have not yet been identified, sadly died despite efforts to save them.” An hour later, police said a fourth person was taken from the sea. That person’s condition is not known.