Connect with us

Featured

Death fears as increasing number of migrants make perilous journey across English Channel

Published

on

On the day the EU agreed to accept Theresa May’s draft Brexit deal, Sky News witnessed the growing problem of migrants crossing the English Channel to reach the UK.

It’s 2.30 am in Dover when we first hear reports of another stranded migrant boat.

It’s bitterly cold and amid the darkness and the swell of the sea the coastguard search for more than two hours.

We are following closely behind with a local skipper.

Even on this big catamaran the Channel waters are turbulent, it’s hard to imagine being out here in a tiny dinghy.

We’re looking for a flashing SOS light coming from the stranded boat and eventually out of the darkness a dinghy appears.

Migrant dinghy rescued in English Channel
Image:
More than 100 migrants have been rescued off the Kent coast this month alone

It looks like there are eight or so suspected migrants on board.

The coastguard and British border force are here, but we are in French waters now so the suspected migrants are picked up by the French authorities.

A coastguard helicopter appears overhead and we’re soon told to leave the area.

Seeing this rescue first-hand is a grim reminder of the dangers of these attempted crossings.

The darkness makes it impossible to see in any direction and I can’t see how anyone could make it far without proper navigation.

Previously many migrants have been treated for hypothermia when they are picked up and it’s easy to see why.

I’m well prepared in thermals and inside a covered boat, but it is bitterly cold out here.

And this scene isn’t unique. More than 100 migrants have been rescued off the Kent coast this month alone.

On Friday, a boat was saved with eight men on board claiming to be Iranian, and on Thursday another two boats were rescued with 14 on board.

Some say there may be a Brexit factor here, as it’s thought more migrants could be attempting the journey in case border security gets tougher.

Skipper Craig Burns says: “It’s incredibly dangerous, imagine making that journey in a tiny dinghy… I’ve never seen so many rescues here, if this carries on it’s only a matter of time before we’re picking up dead bodies.”

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job

Trending