Woman dies after getting into difficulty in water

A woman has died after getting into difficulty in water off the Isle of Harris.

The coastguard received a called to a beach near Horgabost at 7.45am on Wednesday and the search and rescue helicopter was deployed from Stornoway.

As well as rescue teams from Scalpay and Tarbert, they were joined by the Leverburgh RNLI lifeboat and the woman was recovered from the water by the helicopter.

She was transported to the Western Isles Hospital in Stornoway where she was pronounced dead.

A Maritime and Coastguard Agency statement said: “HM Coastguard received a 999 call from a member of the public at 7.45am this morning saying that a woman was in difficulty in the water near Horgabost, Isle of Harris.

“The coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Stornoway, coastguard rescue teams from Scalpay and Tarbert, and the Leverburgh RNLI lifeboat were sent. The woman was recovered from the water by the helicopter.

“Stornoway Coastguard Rescue Team manned the helicopter landing site at the Western Isles Hospital, where the woman was passed into the care of the Scottish Ambulance Service and transferred on to the hospital.

“We have no further information at this time.”

Police Scotland were also called to the scene at 8.25am and said there are no suspicious circumstances following early inquiries.

Her next of kin is aware.

Inspector Jane Nicolson said: “Our thoughts first and foremost are with the woman’s family and friends.

“We are carrying out enquiries to establish the full circumstances which have led to her death and this work is at an early stage.

“The death is currently unexplained, though initial enquiries suggest there are no suspicious circumstances.

“We are grateful for the assistance of our partners in the emergency services and members of the public in relation to this incident.”

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