A 46-year-old diver, who surfaced unconscious from a Portland dive, has died. 

Emergency services descended on Weymouth Harbour yesterday (Sunday) after man from Blackpool surfaced unconscious from a dive seven miles east of Portland.

The coastguard helicopter and the air ambulance were both scrambled.

The air ambulance landed at the Marsh playing fields.

It is understood the diver was brought into Weymouth Harbour on the dive boat with a coastguard helicopter paramedic on board.

Police have now confirmed the diver has died.  

A spokesman for Dorset Police said: "At 11.20am on Sunday, September 16 Dorset Police received a call from the coastguard informing us that they were dealing with an unconscious diver at Weymouth port.

"Emergency services attended but very sadly the diver – a 46-year-old man from Blackpool – was pronounced dead a short time later."

The man's next of kin have now been informed and the coroner has been notified.

The death is not being treated as suspicious and enquiries are being carried out on behalf of the coroner.

Both Weymouth lifeboats were launched and Wyke Coastguard Rescue Team was deployed for the diver incident.

Dorset Echo:

Air ambulance at the Marsh  Picture: Andrew King

Custom House Quay was cordoned off between East Street and South Parade to allow emergency services to work at the harbour safely, below.

Dorset Echo:

A Maritime and Coastguard Agency spokesman said: "Just after 10am this morning we were informed of male diver who surfaced, unconscious, seven miles east of Portland.

"Weymouth all-weather lifeboat, Weymouth inshore lifeboat, South West Ambulance Service, the Coastguard Helicopter and an air ambulance were tasked to the incident."

Onlookers told of their shock whilst watching emergency services gather around Custom House Quay. 

Sam Spark, who was visiting Weymouth, said: “I saw the lifeboat go out at around 10.30am and I saw the helicopter at around 10.45am. I heard a lot of sirens and thought something must have been going on.

“I initially thought the lifeboat was going out on an exercise.”

Richard O’Brien, from Bristol, said he saw a diver being brought in to the harbour.

Joanna Tavernier saw the emergency services gathered near to her house on Custom House Quay.

She said: “There were both of the RNLI lifeboats, police cars and ambulances.

“It’s a very unfortunate event. I’m always telling my children that we have to respect the sea.”

Wyke Coastguard Rescue Team said the team were tasked to provide safety cover at the Dorchester landing site for the coastguard helicopter.

However it was decided to bring the diver into Weymouth by boat with the helicopter's winchman on board.

They said the air ambulance doctor was then transferred to the harbour., along with Portland Bill Coastguard Rescue Team.

It was one of a series of coastguard rescue incidents off the Dorset coast at the weekend.

Coastguards and other partners, including search and rescue volunteers, had a very busy weekend dealing with a range of emergencies on the coastline and in the sea.

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