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22 July 2013, 12:28
Three men have been taken to hospital after they became stuck on a sandbank during the incoming tide off West Sussex.
Solent Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) was first contacted at 5.40pm on Sunday 21 July by West Wittering Lifeguards who were in the process of rescuing the men from the water near Chichester.
Solent MRCC tasked the Coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Lee-on-Solent and Selsey Coastguard Rescue Team, along with the two RNLI lifeboats from Hayling Island, the harbour patrol boat from Chichester and the inshore rescue boat from West Wittering. Police and Ambulance were also in attendance.
Two of the men were airlifted by the Coastguard helicopter to the QA hospital in Portsmouth, while the other was taken by ambulance to St. Richard's hospital in Chichester.
Matt West, Watch Manager at Solent MRCC, said:
"If you are heading out for a swim, check the sea conditions and remember that even though the sea may look calm on the surface, there is the danger of strong currents underneath. Always check tide times as well so that you can avoid being cut off by the incoming tide.
"If you see someone in difficulty, you should call 999 immediately and ask for the Coastguard."