Police name man missing from North Sea ferry

Terrence Murphy is missing after disappearing from a DFDS ferry between Amsterdam and North Shields
Terrence Murphy is missing after disappearing from a DFDS ferry between Amsterdam and North Shields

Police have named a man who is believed to have gone missing from a North Sea ferry.

Sunderland and Hartlepool lifeboats were involved in the search yesterday, alongside Coastguard Rescue Teams from Sunderland and South Shields.

Terrence Murphy, 67, from Melbourne, Australia, was travelling on a DFDS ferry from Amsterdam but did not disembark when the the vessel arrived in North Shields.

Enquiries are ongoing to find him and establish the circumstances around his disappearance.

He is described as being white, 5ft 7in, medium build and with medium length grey hair.

His next of kin have been contacted and Northumbria Police are asking Terrence, or anyone with any information, to contact them on 101 quoting log 413 08/03/18.

HM Coastguard has confirmed it will not pick up a search for Mr Murphy, which was stood down at 7.30pm yesterday after the alarm was raised at 12.15pm .

The search and rescue helicopter based at Humberside was sent to the area and lifeboats from as far afield as Filey, Scarborough and Whitby were drafted in.

A Mayday relay broadcast was issued to inform all vessels in the area.

A spokesman for Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team said: "The team were paged to take part in a full scale coastal search for a person reported to be overboard from a DFDS ferry after their belongings were found still onboard after its arrival in North Shields.

"Ourselves, Blyth, Seaham and Voluntary Life Brigades from South Shields and Tynemouth conducted a full coastal search of beaches and coves from Seaham in the south to Cambois in the north whilst lifeboats from Filey, Whitby, Scarborough, Hartlepool, Tynemouth and Blyth, along with the Coastguard Search and Rescue Helicopter, conducted a seaborne search of the extensive probability area.

"With our search area from Sunderland Harbour to Frenchmans Bay at South Shields complete and with high tide fast approaching the team was stood down to return to station."

The service has urged anyone reporting a coastal emergency call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

A spokesman for Hartlepool RNLI said: "A volunteer crew were paged at 2.50pm to take part in a search along with other flanking lifeboat stations and agencies for a person missing from a ferry boat.

"The all-weather lifeboat launched at 3.10pm to begin a search approximately five miles off Hartlepool along the route of the ferry that had travelled from the Netherlands to North Shields earlier in the day.

"With a comprehensive search of the allocated area completed the all-weather lifeboat and volunteer crew were stood down by Humber Coastguard at approximately 7.10pm.

"The all-weather lifeboat returned to the Ferry Road lifeboat station at 7.50pm and was refuelled and made ready for service by 8.15pm."

Hartlepool RNLI lifeboats operations manager Chris Hornsey said: "Despite a long and thorough search of the area nothing was found.

"Any passengers with information are asked to call Northumbria Police on 101."