Humber Coastguard has been coordinating a search for a man seen walking in the sea near to Marsden Grotto, South Shields.
A fisherman called 999 and spoke to Humber Coastguard just before 11pm last night, reporting that a man was in the water. He soon disappeared from view.
The Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team, the 2 RNLI lifeboats from Tynemouth were sent to the scene, along with the police helicopter and the search and rescue helicopter from RAF Boulmer.
Despite the extensive search, nothing has yet been found. Conditions on scene are said to be good, with light winds and clear visibility.
Fran Wilkins, Watch Manager at Humber Coastguard, said:
We’ve had rescue units on scene and carrying out a thorough search for almost 3 hours, but unfortunately we have not located this man.
Units have now been stood down. We will assess the situation later on this morning to decide the next best course of action.