Security introduced to keep crowds away from dead fin whale on Bridlington beach

Security staff will be employed to keep crowds away from a whale which died after beaching on the east coast.

The 25-tonne animal – believed to be a junior male fin whale – died on Tuesday evening after becoming stranded near Bridlington's South Beach, in East Yorkshire.

A police cordon was put up on Wednesday as the body attracted large crowds.

Andy Height, of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: "We understand the public's interest, but we also want the public to be respectful of the situation, so we are going to have to cordon off large parts of the beach.

"We spoke with the police about putting a cordon up, there's going to be some security on tonight. We don't want people standing on the whale for obvious reasons."

Large crowds have been gathering to see the whale. Credit: ITV News

Fin whales are the world's second longest animal after the blue whale. The largest one on record was 25.9 m and weighed nearly 74 tonnes.

They are found in the world's major oceans but rarely in the shallow waters of the North Sea.

John Bennett, who was one of the first people to see the stranded whale on Tuesday, said: "You could see that it was still alive, it was still blowing water out of its hole and you could see the tail flapping. It was obviously in some kind of distress. I found out this morning they weren't able to save it.

"You don't expect to see anything like it, especially in Bridlington. Sad to see it like this but, wow, what a thing to see - it's amazing."

An operation will take place in the coming days to move the whale back out to sea. Credit: ITV News

Mr Height said, unless the tides washed it back to sea, an operation to remove the dead whale, which measures around 17m, would take place in the coming days after an autopsy by zoological experts.

He said: "We are trying to get the whale off the beach in one piece, so we're looking at [using] a sledge – rolling over the animal onto a sledge and then potentially dragging the sledge off the beach and then craning the whale onto a low loader. It's easier said than done.

"We are trying to get this done before the weekend but we have to work with the tides."

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