Woman dies after being pulled from water near hovercraft slipway

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A 59-year-old woman who had been fighting for her life after she was pulled from the water near a hovercraft slipway in Southsea, Portsmouth has died.

The woman was dragged from the water unconscious on Saturday April, 24, and rushed to hospital in a life-threatening condition.

It is understood she had been pulled from the water as a hovercraft arrived near to the Hovertravel slipway in Clarence Pier, Portsmouth, from the Isle of Wight.

Early reports suggested the woman had been pulled under the water by the hovercraft whilst taking a selfie, but police claim the vehicle was not involved.

The woman's next of kin have been informed and are currently being supported by specially trained officers.

Her death is not being treated as suspicious and police are preparing a file for the coroner, Hampshire Police said.

In a statement, Hampshire Police said: "We were called shortly after 5.45pm on Saturday 24 April to a report that a woman was unconscious in the water on Clarence Esplanade, Southsea.

"Officers attended and a 59-year-old woman was taken to Queen Alexandra Hospital. Despite best efforts, she was sadly pronounced dead on Saturday evening.

"Next of Kin have been informed and are being supported by officers. Officers do not believe the Hovercraft to have been involved in any way at this time. The death is not being treated as suspicious and a file shall be prepared for the coroner."

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Hovertravel, who operate a regular service between Southsea and Ryde on the Isle of Wight, said: "The Solent Flyer hovercraft was not involved with the incident involving a body in water but the crew were alerted.

"As the craft landed at Southsea this afternoon, the ground team alerted the pilot about a body in the water, as per Hovertravel’s normal safety procedure.

"The pilot landed safely and the service is operating as normal. The person has subsequently been recovered by the emergency services and the police are dealing with the matter. All further enquiries should be addressed to the police."

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