Dorset Police are guarding a two mile stretch of Chesil Beach after thousands of packets of cigarettes washed up from a container ship
A shipping container carrying tonnes of cigarettes washed ashore at Axmouth, near Seaton.
Chesil Beach in Dorset has been littered with dead Seabirds that have been washed up during the recent storms.
All today's fast sailings between Weymouth and the Channel Islands have been cancelled due to bad weather.
The driver of a digger has been airlifted to hospital after it fell into Portland Harbour this afternoon.
The digger had been working on a building site next to the harbour wall. It ended up on its side under the water, a few metres below.
The emergency services including police, coastguard and paramedics helped rescue the driver.
Video courtesy of Dorset News Service
Condor Ferries says it has cancelled all fast sailings between Weymouth and Guernsey today, due to bad weather.
Dorset Police are warning people to keep away after another ship’s cargo has been recovered on Portland.
The contents of a shipping container were washed up on Chesil Beach. Most of it was destroyed by the authorities.
The majority of this content has been washed up in a destroyed state and members of the public are advised not to attend the beach area.
– Dorset Police’s Force Incident Commander Chief Inspector Dean O’Conner
The councils and emergency services of Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole are united in their plea to the public to think carefully about visiting the shoreline.
The recent influx of cigarettes washed up onto the beaches of Weymouth and Portland may tempt some people to venture out in search of free tobacco but they will be disappointed because the cargo, lost overboard during storms earlier this month, has been badly damaged and is beyond use.
Our main fear is for the safety of the public. Landslips over the past few weeks remain a real risk and people should not put themselves at increase risk.
– Bob Gaiger, Dorset spokesman for HM Revenue & Customs
These cigarettes were part of a large legitimate commercial consignment being shipped from Rotterdam to Sri Lanka when they were lost overboard in storms.
Those cigarettes that have been washed up on local beaches will be recovered and sent for disposal. The public are urged to resist the temptation to collect the cigarettes which have been ruined by the sea water.
There's a warning tonight of the vulnerabilty of the West Country's wildlife and coastline as the aftermath of the recent storms continues to be felt. Dorset's historic Chesil Beach is once again covered in litter and dead birds.
A few miles along the shore, coastguards and the police are guarding 14 million cigarettes that washed ashore in Devon yesterday.
Tonight, they've found another shipping container at sea.
ITV West Country's Environment Correspondent Duncan Sleightholme reports:-
– Simon Porter, MCA counter-pollution and salvage officer.
The Beer Coastguard Rescue Team, police and council officials are currently on scene at Axmouth beach and the container has been cordoned off.
The public is reminded that all wreck material found in the UK has to be reported to the MCA's Receiver of Wreck.
Those who don't declare items are breaking the law and could find themselves facing hefty fines and paying the owner twice the value of the item recovered.
If you have found wreck material you can declare it on the MCA website.
Police and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) have issued a stern warning to treasure hunters after a shipping container thought to be filled with cigarettes washed up in Axmouth.
– Devon and Cornwall Police
We have officers there because it has been seized under section 273 of the Merchant Shipping Act.
It is not a free-for-all for the public. There are dangers associated with containers and products which have washed ashore.
The message is, police are seizing them and would ask the public to steer clear. We are not expecting any more.