Fear biker swept out to sea

HOPES are fading for a motor- cyclist who failed to return from a midnight ride along Broadwater Beach at Evans Head on Friday.

The 27-year-old is believed to have been swept out to sea after crashing his bike into rocks about eight kilometres north of the town.

According to police, the bike was not fitted with lights and the rider was not wearing a helmet.

Tyre marks suggest the motorcycle entered the rock formation at high speed and crashed.

Police fear the man suffered serious injuries in the crash, only to be washed out to sea by a king tide.

It is understood fishermen spotted the bike in the early hours of Saturday morning and contacted police.

The man's family also contacted police after he failed to return by daylight.

It is understood he had been living at Tweed Heads but had returned to Evans Head to spend time with the family during the holidays.

Officers from the Richmond Local Area Command found the man's damaged motorbike submerged among rocks leading to the beach.

Over the weekend Police Rescue, along with State Emergency Service personnel, searched nearby sand dunes while surf lifesavers from Evans Head and Ballina, using inflatable dinghies and a jet ski, made sweeps of the ocean, north and south of the accident site.

Stephen Leahy, from Australian Lifeguard Services, said sea marker dye was dropped from the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter to determine the direction and speed of ocean currents to assist the four-hour search.

Mr Leahy said the ocean conditions were very hazardous and the water clarity was poor, which hampered efforts to spot the man.

The search is due to continue today.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Evans Head police on 6682 4202 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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