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The UK Coastguard have launched a major search and rescue operation this evening in the Solent area after receiving a mayday call at 9.45pm from 70ft yacht taking on water. The mayday call made on Channel 16 informed the UK Coastguard that there were seven on board with lifejackets and their pumps were not coping.

Hill Head Coastguard Rescue Team, Gosport And Fareham Inshore Rescue Service, Cowes RNLI Lifeboat, RNLI Calshot Lifeboat and the UK Coastguard search and rescue helicopter based at Lee Solent are currently carrying an extensive search of the area. Hampshire Police Vessel are also assisting and South Central Ambulance have been notified and are on standby.

The UK Coastguard has issued a Mayday relay broadcast to all vessels in the area to maintain a lookout and assist the rescue operation if necessary. We have no further at this information at this stage and the search is ongoing.

UPDATE 00:01AM Tuesday 16 May

Ryde Inshore Rescue Service, Needles and Bembridge Coastguard, as well as a second helicopter from the UK Coastguard St Athan Base have joined the search operation.

So far nothing has been found and the search remains ongoing in the River Medina and Solent area.

UPDATE 1AM Tuesday 16 May

After an extensive and thorough search of the Solent, River Medina and Southampton water, with nothing found, all search and rescue teams have been stood down.

There are no plans to resume the search operation unless further information comes forward.

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