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Tyne tragedy: Kayaks ‘would capsize in rough water’

RECOVERED ... one of the search and rescue personnel loads a recovered kayak into a police vehicle.

RECOVERED ... one of the search and rescue personnel loads a recovered kayak into a police vehicle.

A LEADING canoeing instructor believes the kayaks involved in the Tyne tragedy were of a type which were difficult to control in rough water.

Allen Wearmouth, an experienced outdoor instructor and level 5 coach with the British Canoe Union, said photos of the kayaks recovered by police show they are like surfboards, where the user sits on top.

“If you get rough water, you are going to fall off,” said Mr Wearmouth, who is based in South Tyneside.

The instructor knows the stretch of the Tyne well and said the water around the weir by the Riding Mill pumping station was lethal in these conditions.

He did not know the circumstances of the tragedy, but he said: “If a sit-on-top kayak gets into that weir, they are going to capsize, the probability is 100%.

“This news has taken me aback, it’s so sad.”

 
 
 

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