Three men were rescued by lifeboat from their life raft after their fishing vessel sank this morning off the coast near Southwold.

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At 10am, Thames Coastguard was alerted to a VHF radio message from the fishing vessel Southern Star, reporting that it was sinking around four miles east of Dunwich.

The 10-metre vessel was rapidly taking in water in the engine compartment and sank within three minutes forcing the crew to abandon to their life raft.

A Southwold fishing vessel was near to the scene and was able to secure the life raft until assistance arrived.

Thames Coastguard requested the launch of Southwold and Aldeburgh RNLI lifeboats. All three men, who were shocked but well, were located by the ‘Mistress Three’ before being recovered and transferred to Southwold lifeboat and taken to shore.

Watch Manager Aimee Rampton at Thames Coastguard said: “The men rescued today were all sensibly wearing life jackets and fortunately the weather conditions are a great deal more benign than yesterday, when rough seas would have made it difficult to get into a life raft.

“To save time in an emergency at sea, HM Coastguard recommends that boat owners link VHF DSC to the GPS on the boat enabling a very quick emergency distress alert to be broadcast, which will include your location.”

The RNLI Aldeburgh ALB crew was tasked to make the area safe from shipping hazards caused by wreckage from the sunken boat.

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