One of the Maritime Coastguard Agency’s fixed wing aircraft was called from a training exercise west of Lewis yesterday (Tuesday 7 July) to investigate an alert over a possible overturned vessel.

Stornoway Coastguard operations centre received a call from an informant at 1.20pm, saying that an object was visible about a mile offshore, close to Breanish in Uig district.

Coastguard rescue aircraft CG 21, normally based at Doncaster airport, was on exercise in the area at the time and was tasked to overfly an investigate the report.

Also called to the scene were Miavaig and Breasclete Coastguard Rescue Teams, on standby in case a rescue was needed.

The object spotted by the aircraft turned out to be a badly decomposed whale carcass, measuring about 16ft in length.

All teams were stood down at 2.20pm and the call was classed as a false alarm with good intent.

The fixed-wing aircraft went on to refuel at Stornoway airport, giving spotters a chance to have a close-up look at the King Air 200 aircraft (pictured).