Hartlepool pier cordoned off after male's death
Police cordoned off a Hartlepool pier following the discovery of a body this morning.
South Pier at Hartlepool marina was taped off by Cleveland Police and a number of emergency services vehicles descended on the area at around midday on Tuesday.
The body of a male was taken away and police say they are not treating the death as suspicious.
A Cleveland Police spokesman said: "At around 11.45am this morning, Tuesday 18th September, the body of a male was located close to South Pier in Hartlepool.
"The death is not being treated as suspicious and a file will be prepared for the Coroner."
The pier reopened at around 12.30pm.
Residents described a flurry of activity as police, the Coastguard and ambulance service all attended the area.
They told of a middle-aged woman who was escorted away by police officers.
Shortly afterwards an ambulance reversed down the length of the pier to where the body was.
Sheila Collins, who lives in Trident Close, said: "The police came and I saw them looking around as if they were looking for somebody.
"All of a sudden I saw them running down the pier. When they came back up they were with a woman.
"The next minute I saw the ambulance go down the pier."
Another woman whose flat overlooks the pier, but did not wish to be named, said: "We just looked out and the police were there.
"You get a lot of people down here, everyone comes down for a walk.
"It is very sad. They might have just been out for a walk."
A man, who wanted to be anonymous, added: "At first I thought the police were after criminals. When I saw the woman I thought it must be something bad because she looked like she was in shock."
A resident of Compass House flats, who did not wish to be named, said: "In total there was four ordinary police vans, a scenes of crime van, a police car, Coastguard pick up and an ambulance.
"All we know is the casualty was at the end of the south pier."
Paula Lowther who lives in the flats added: "The paramedics walked down the pier first then came back and the coastguard opened the gates and the ambulance reversed all the way down to wherever the incident was."