Published Wednesday, 18 September 2013
One man had to be rescued from the waves. (© Getty)
The alarm was raised at about 12.30pm on Wednesday, when the fisherman made a distress call to report that his vessel was taking on water and sinking fast.
Belfast Coastguard tried to make contact, but had no response.
"We had to act quickly, with limited information, when we couldn't make further contact with the boat," Ian Graham, Watch Manager at Belfast Coastguard, said.
"Knowing the boat was taking on a lot of water, we sent several rescue units to make sure we could find the man as quickly as possible."
Lifeboats from Portaferry, Donaghadee and Bangor were sent to the scene and a rescue helicopter from Dublin was also called into action.
"Portaferry RNLI Inshore Lifeboat managed to pull the man out of the water, and he was then picked up by the Irish Coast Guard helicopter who took him straight to hospital," Mr Graham added.
The condition of the man winched to safety is not yet clear, but it is understood that he was conscious when rescued from the water and taken to Musgrave Park Hospital.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency is advising fishermen to make sure that they are well prepared when heading out to sea, with as much life-saving equipment on board as possible.
The man rescued on Wednesday afternoon is believed to have been wearing a personal floatation device provided to him two weeks ago through a multi-agency initiative.
© UTV News