TWO men were rescued after drifting three miles offshore on an inflatable dinghy.

The Lyme Regis lifeboat was called after reports of two men floating three miles offshore at Abbotsbury at about 11.30am yesterday.

A lifeboat spokesman said: "The men were in danger, drifting on a strong current, and were taken on board the lifeboat with their dinghy. They were safe and well and taken by the lifeboat to Abbotsbury where they were met by local coastguards."

The Portland Bill and Wyke coastguard rescue teams were on hand. Coastguards met the men on the beach and gave them stern safety advice regarding inflatables in general but especially in offshore winds.

As the Lyme Regis lifeboat was heading back, they received a call from Freshwater Beach about a woman possibly in difficulty on an inflatable. But the caller did not follow up with a call to the coastguards. The lifeboat crew found no trace of the woman and a search was called off. This call was recorded as a false alarm with good intent.