Fears for missing girl off coast

THE air search for a 10-year-old girl who disappeared at sea has been abandoned until first light, police said tonight.

THE air search for a 10-year-old girl who disappeared at sea has been abandoned until first light, police said tonight.

The child vanished after entering the water with a friend, also aged 10, on a beach in Clacton.

Members of the public rushed to help when both girls got into difficulty at about 4pm today.

An onlooker managed to bring one of the girls ashore but he was unable to locate her friend after she failed to re-surface.


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The man and the rescued child were taken to Clacton and District Hospital, where they were both treated for water intake. The man was later released but the girl, along with her mother, remained in hospital after suffering from shock.

The missing child was in Clacton on a day trip with her friend and her friend's parents.

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Police said the group were visiting the popular seaside resort from Buckinghamshire.

Officers contacted the missing girl's mother at her home and she was travelling to meet search teams in Clacton, said a police spokesman.

The police helicopter helped clear a section of the beach opposite where the girls first experienced problems, opposite Trafalgar Road, off Marine Parade West.

A spokesman for Essex Police said: “Police officers and coastguard staff are continuing to work throughout the night.”

A rescue helicopter, RAF R125 from Wattisham, was initially scrambled to begin an air search for the missing girl and a police helicopter also flew into the area to begin a visual search by air.

The air search was called off when light conditions became too poor, police said.

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