The South Wales National Police Air Service helicopter making a tight turn over Penarth Esplanade late this afternoon . It combed the coastline using heat-detecting equipment

A large-scale land,sea and air search along the coastline from Whitcliffe Drive to Lavernock Point and Sully Island was launched late today for man reported missing by South Wales Police

Coastguard HQ at Milford Haven requested the launch of both of Penarth ‘s lifeboats and Penarth Coastguard’s rescue volunteers were also deployed to the clifftop at Whitcliffe Drive .

A Penarth Coastguard unit at Whitcliffe Drive overlooking the cliffs

The area of the multi-agency search stretched from Penarth to Lavernock and on towards Sully. Barry Coastguard officers were also involved in the beach search

The number of swimmers and sunbathers on the beach made it difficult for the search teams to locate the person they were looking for

One complication was the very warm and sunny weather, which had attracted  several sunbathers to  the stretch of beach between Penarth and Lavernock and had also tempted a number of people to take a cooling dip in the sea .

That made it all the harder for the searchers to establish whether the “high-risk” man they were trying to locate was amongst those spotted toasting themselves in the sun.

The crew of Spirit of Penarth II manouever the lifeboat back onto her trailer on  returning from their search of the coastline

The D Class lifeboat Spirit of Penarth II returned to base at Penarth at 17:30 with nothing having been sighted. The Penarth Atlantic 85 lifeboat was also involved in the search as was the ocean-going Barry Dock lifeboat.

The person thought to have been “missing” later turned out to be safe and well and was actually discovered near Penarth Pier . The cost of the search operation will have exceeded £5,000.

According to South Wales Police this is the 40th “missing person” to have been reported in the Vale of Glamorgan in the last six weeks since June 1st 2018.



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  1. David Day says:

    What is a ‘high risk’ man? To whom is he a risk? Himself? Others? Both? Is his behaviour likely to be inappropriate, discourteous, homicidal, obnoxious, or what? Why cannot the police say what they mean and keep us informed?

    • NewsNet says:

      “High Risk” is the description applied by Barry Coastguards who carried out a search of the shoreline in the Sully area – although the term, admittedly, does not make it clear who was actually at risk. The terminology used would have come originally from South Wales Police. The missing man was also referred to as a being a “MISPER” (missing person).

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