COASTGUARDS and the police helicopter spent an hour in a shoreline search following two reports of a flare-sighting.
But after nothing was found, the search was called off.
A police officer reported seeing a distress flare go off near North Sands, in the West View area of Hartlepool, around 9.10pm on Friday.
A second report was received of the same flare, from further up the coast.
The HM Coastguard team, along with the police helicopter, conducted a search of the area.
But after an hour the operation was called off when nothing was found.