Two die after car cliff plunge

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TWO people have died after their car plunged 340ft over a cliff.

A man and a woman – who have not yet been identified – were found at the bottom of Culver Cliff near Bembridge on the Isle of Wight at about 8pm today.

They were inside the car, which had landed on its roof.

Anne Ricketts, 47, from nearby Sandown, was walking her dog along the beach around the time of the accident.

The social worker said she saw a tractor dragging a trailer containing four firefighters towards the beach at the time.

Just after 8pm, she said she saw a coastguard helicopter drop someone into the water before leaving, while ‘truckloads’ of rescuers from the coastguard were being dropped off nearby.

Ms Ricketts said she also saw a lifeboat from nearby Bembridge RNLI station.

Coastguard teams from Bembridge, Ryde and Ventnor were called out as well as the Solent Coastguard.

Two lifeboats from Bembridge also joined the search with fire and rescue, ambulance and police teams.

Hampshire Constabulary spokesman Ian Sainsbury said: ‘Officers were called at around 8pm this evening after reports a car had gone over Culver Cliff at Bembridge with two people inside.’

Police are probing circumstances surrounding the incident.

Anyone with information is asked to call CID at Newport police station on 101 or 0845 0454545.