Men rescued after drifting from Northern Ireland to Scotland

Image caption,
The men were found on rocks close to the Corsewall Lighthouse on Scotland's west coast

Two men from Northern Ireland were rescued from rocks after their water scooter ran out of fuel and drifted for hours across to the Scottish coast.

The men had set off from Ballycastle on Friday morning before getting into trouble, without any navigation aids.

Belfast Coastguard were alerted and the Stranraer Lifeboat was able to locate them on rocks at Corsewall Lighthouse near Stranraer at about 17:30.

Both men were said to be very cold and one had suffered an ankle injury.

The coastguard said that a private vessel which was taking them back over the North Channel to Northern Ireland later in the evening also ran out of fuel and had to be towed to Red Bay.

A spokesman for Belfast Coastguard said: "They had no navigation aids, they could not get a signal from their mobile phone and they had drifted for hours.

"We don't know where they broke down because they did not have any navigational assistance.

"They are certainly two lucky men. One of them was able to get up the rocks and raise the alarm at the nearby hotel and we got the Stranraer Lifeboat out."

They were picked up by Stranraer Lifeboat late on Friday afternoon and taken to hospital for an examination and later released.

The lifeboat returned to the scene and was able to get a tow on the water scooter.

After the vessel returning the men across the channel broke down, Red Bay Lifeboat was sent out and towed it back to Red Bay, where it arrived at about 02:30.

The distance across the North Channel from Ballycastle to the coast near Stranraer is about 40 miles.

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