Northern Ireland news

Search for missing kayaker continues

Four RNLI lifeboats have been despatched to search for Robert Hanna

A SEARCH and rescue operation to locate a missing kayaker has resumed off the Antrim coast.

Robert Hanna (47) from Carrickfergus failed to return home after kayaking off Portmuck, Co Antrim, on Monday afternoon and a friend raised the alarm.

The coastguard led an overnight search from Belfast Lough to Fairhead, with the aid of RNLI lifeboats from Redbay, Donaghadee, Bangor and Larne.

Helicopters from the Irish Coast Guard, Royal Navy and PSNI were also involved.

The coastguard and RNLI lifeboats resumed their search this morning with help from Campletown RNLI in Scotland.

Dawn Petrie, from the coastguard, said vessels in the area were being asked to keep a look out for Mr Hanna.

RNLI Divisional Operations Managers Darren Byers said volunteers had worked through the night, only stopping at 3.30am for "a short break to rest and refuel their lifeboats but are now back out and will be making every attempt this morning to find the missing kayaker and bring him home".

“Our thoughts and prayers are very much with the man and his family at this time,” he added.

Mr Hanna had been due to return to shore at 3pm yesterday after having set out at 1.30pm. He was reported missing just before 7pm.

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