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Huge search and rescue mission underway after woman falls from bridge into river

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A major search and rescue operation has been launched after a woman was seen going into the River Ouse in north Yorkshire.

Emergency services are at the scene searching the river for the woman, the York Rescue boat is also assisting in the search.

The A1036 Lendal Bridge was closed in both directions by North Yorkshire Police and motorists were being urged to avoid the area.

North Yorkshire Police announced: "Motorists are being urged to avoid Lendal bridge after a woman entered the River Ouse from the bridge, at around 12.10pm.

"Emergency Services are currently at the scene searching the river for the woman. York Rescue boat are also assisting the search."

The bridge is now understood to have reopened, but long tailbacks are expected in both directions

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One eye witness said she had been told by emergency services that Lendal Bridge was expected to be closed for some time.

Public transport services in the area are understandably disrupted. Local bus operator Reliance tweeted: "All services will drop off at Theatre Royal and Pick up at Exhibition Square until further notice. Please expect delays due to congestion."

A Yorkshire Live reporter on the scene said: "The bridge is blocked off in both directions while police, fire, ambulance and lifeboat workers work.

"There’s a bit of a mix by the bridge of people anxiously waiting around and looking to find out what’s happened and asking questions."

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