UPDATE: Sea search for cyclist called off

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The search for a cyclist feared to have been swept out to sea by a wave in Blackpool has been called off.

Three coastguard teams, a helicopter and a lifeboat all scoured the water along the Fylde coast but found no trace of the man or a bike.

It is not clear whether the cyclist actually entered the water.

Emergency services are hopeful the call was a well-intentioned false alarm.

The search operation was launched after a member of the public called 999 at around 4.50pm and reported the cyclist had gone into the sea at North Shore.

The caller reported seeing a cyclist on the Promenade before a large wave hit and when they looked back they had gone.

A lifeboat was scrambled to the location from Fleetwood, while coastguard teams from Lytham, Blackpool and Fleetwood were called to assist.

The smaller Blackpool lifeboat was unable to launch due to the stormy conditions.

Watch officer Dave Wooder, at Liverpool Coastguard, which coordinated the search, said: “The lifeboat has done multiple searches of the whole Fylde coast.

“The coastguards have all done coastal searches and as it stands nothing has been found.

“We have had no reports of anybody going missing. The area was searched and saturated.

“The report was of a cyclist being hit by a wave coming over the Promenade but it is not certain they got swept out to sea.”