Fishermen had to be airlifted to safety during an early morning incident after becoming trapped at the bottom of cliffs. 

At around 1.55am on Sunday (November 5), emergency services from Staithes and Runswick RNLI lifeboat were called to Boulby Cliffs by HM Coastguard Humber, following reports of four anglers coming into difficulty.

The neap tide coupled with atmospheric and environmental conditions meant the water level did not drop below three metres and they were not able to access a safe route back.

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Onshore winds and two to three-meter waves meant it was decided it was safer to request the Coastguard rescue helicopter rather than use the lifeboat to extract the casualties.

The Coastguard helicopter arrived at around 4am and began to lift them to a landing site near Boulby whilst Staithes’ volunteer crew stood off and observed until their rescue from the shore was complete.

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The lifeboat, the Atlantic 85 Sheila & Dennis Tongue III, was then washed down and made ready for service.

Luke Hutchinson, volunteer Helm, said: "RNLI volunteers are ready to take the call to save lives at sea 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and are trained how to assess and respond to challenging sea conditions.

"If you are visiting the coast this winter please check weather conditions and consult tide tables. It is important you ensure you have a means of contacting help if needed, and someone is aware of where you have gone and what time you are to be expected back."