A missing surfer has been found after spending 32 hours out at sea.
13 miles from the Argyll coast, 22-year-old Matthew Bryce was found safe by the coastguard after going missing at 9am on Sunday. Prior to his disappearance, Chief Inspector Paul Robertson at Dunoon Police Office had said: “We are obviously becoming increasingly concerned for Matthew’s well-being and we would urge any members of the public who can assist with our enquiries to establish his whereabouts to contact us urgently”
He was travelling from the St Catherine’s area of Argyll to Westport Beach near Campbeltown when he went missing, The Mirror reports.
The Glaswegian was flown to Belfast Hospital to go under the necessary checks after being stranded for over a day.
“The response to our appeal to find Matthew has been outstanding,” Chief Inspector Robertson said. “It has been a real team effort and I would like to thank everyone who offered their assistance.”
Following the appeal to find Matthew a number of rescue teams from Gigha, Tarbert, Campbeltown, Southend, Prestwick and Port Ellen got involved, according to The Mirror.
“Hope was fading of finding the surfer safe and well after such a long period in the water and with nightfall approaching we were gravely concerned, but at 7.30pm the crew on the Coastguard rescue helicopter were delighted when they located the man, still with his surfboard and 13 miles off the coast,” Dawn Petrie from Belfast Coastguard Operations Centre told BBC News.
“He was kitted out with all the right clothing, including a thick neoprene suit, and this must have helped him to survive for so long at sea.
“He is hypothermic but conscious and has been flown to hospital in Belfast.”
Teams had feared the worst for the 22-year-old as he clung to his board in the cold water, but he managed to hold on.
“He was extremely lucky,” Petrie told the BBC. “He did the right thing by staying with his surfboard and that certainly aided his survival.”