A MAN was rescued by emergency personnel from a canal narrowboat which became trapped in the River Severn yesterday.

And the unmanned boat subsequently broke free and was recovered near Upton earlier today.

The alert came at 5.25pm after the boat got stuck against a pontoon at the Diglis Basin.

The fire brigade sent a crew from Worcester, along with Water First Responders from Malvern, water rescue vehicles from both Worcester and Evesham. Personnel from West Midlands Search and Rescue and the Severn Area Rescue Association also took part in the operation.

The Worcester water rescue boat was launched and the crew brought the owner of the boat to safety, unharmed, just after 6pm.

Station commander Dan Quinn said: “Once the owner had been rescued, we looked at how to recover the boat but due to the flood warnings in place and the risk of increased water flows on the River Severn, it was decided to leave it where it was overnight.”

The boat dislodged itself overnight, went over the weir and then drifted down the river towards Upton. With the fire service, the police and a team from SARA working together, the boat was located, and recaptured south of Upton, near the M50 bridge.