Coastguards were called out to rescue three kayakers ‘in distress’ late last night (May 16).

A call from the Belfast Coastguard coordination centre was received, prompting a multi-agency response shortly before 11.30pm.

Coastguards from Whitehaven and Maryport, police, fire and rescue crews, ambulance crews, and mountain rescuers from Keswick and Maryport were called out, and a coastguard helicopter from Prestwick was deployed.

A spokesperson from Whitehaven Coastguard said the initial 999 call reporter that the three got into difficulty and became disorientated in the area of Barrow Bay to Great Bay, on the southern side of Derwentwater.

They said: “One kayaker had entered the water but managed to successfully right and re-enter their kayak.

“Now disorientated in the dark and with no phone signal, one kayaker managed to return ashore to get a phone signal and raise the alarm to the coastguard.

“With multiple assets arriving on scene and a command point established, rescue boats and land-based search teams were very swiftly underway to locate both the first kayaker who had raised the alarm and their other two companions who were still lost and disorientated, but had now confirmed they had managed to make it safely ashore.”

The emergency services stood down as all three kayakers were located ashore and confirmed to be uninjured.

The spokesperson said the kayakers were ‘very well equipped and experienced’.

They added that this type of incident, and with better weather on the way, shows how important it is that people who go out on the water have multiple means of being able to raise the alarm for help, such as personal locator beacons, radios, flares, and waterproof pouches for mobile phones – and not being worried about using these if required.