Police still seeking witnesses after £35,000 BMW somersaults into Langstone Harbour

March 1962 and a naval rating signals Halt to more conventional traffic as the Saunders-Roe SRN1 crosses the seafront at Lee-on-the-Solent and returns to HMS Ariel, now the site of the Hovercraft Museum. Roles such as anti-submarine warfare, air-sea rescue and mine countermeasures were foreseen.						                                Pictures courtesy Amberley Publishing

Spotlight hovers over Lee-on-the-Solent museum

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POLICE investigating how a £35,000 luxury car ended up in Langstone Harbour today renewed their appeal for information.

The BMW 535 careered off Eastern Road, somersaulted in the air and landed in the water, opposite the junction with Tangier Road.

The driver managed to free himself and run off before the emergency services arrived.

Police managed to track him down a few hours later and have interviewed him.

They are now trying to piece together exactly what happened and are looking for witnesses to the accident.

It happened at 11.45pm on Thursday and shocked passers-by saw the car plunge into the water.

The Coastguard and Portsmouth RNLI searched the surrounding water to see if anyone else, apart from the driver, was involved.

The vehicle was eventually recovered at 2.40am after an operation rfecorded on film by an RNLI lifeboatman’s headcam.

A spokesman for Hampshire police said: ‘It is understood the vehicle had been driving south on Eastern Road when it came off the road and collided with the embankment.

‘It appears to have become airborne and somersaulted into the water sustaining severe damage to the front end.

‘The driver suffered slight injuries.

‘There is nothing to suggest any other vehicles were involved.’

The driver has not been arrested.

Police and Coastguard were quickly on the scene amid fears that other people might still be in the car.

They called for support from the RNLI Portsmouth inshore lifeboat, Brian’s Pride, to provide cover while they ensured there was no one else in the vehicle and assessed the damage, before having it towed in.

A spokesman for Portsmouth RNLI said: ‘The driver had been seen exiting the vehicle by witnesses but, unsure as to whether any additional casualties remained, Portsmouth Inshore Lifeboat Crew stood by waiting for confirmation that the vehicle was in fact clear.’

Call police on 101 if you can help.

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