Three sailors rescued after leaving ship to go drinking

image source, RNLI/Penarth
image captionThe sailors were rescued on Flat Holm island

Three sailors on their way back from a night of drinking on dry land had to be rescued by lifeboat crews.

The trio had left their cargo ship, anchored two miles off the Somerset coast, to sample the nightlife in Barry, South Wales, on Wednesday.

They began their return trip in a rigid inflatable at about 03:45 GMT, but were reported missing three hours later.

Rescuers found them shortly before 08:30 on Flat Holm island, four miles off the Welsh coast.

The three men, who are Russian, Dutch and Philippine nationals, were crew members aboard the Dutch-registered coaster Alana Evita, the RNLI said.

Five lifeboats from Minehead, Burnham-on-sea, Barry Dock and Penarth were launched together with a coastguard helicopter during the search.

South Wales Police said it had worked with HM Coastguard and the RNLI and added the men were "now being assisted by police officers".

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