Boys narrowly escape death when cliff suddenly collapses minutes after they were seen playing beneath it
This is the dramatic moment two boys narrowly escaped being crushed to death by falling rocks when part of a cliff collapsed moments after they passed underneath.
The two young boys and a man were seen chipping away at rocks at the base of the 60-feet-high cliff minutes before a loud crack was heard.
Tonnes of razor sharp rocks fell and crashed on the beach below.
The astonishing scenes which threw debris 20ft from base of the rocks were captured by Andrew ‘Handy’ Pearson, 46, who was out on Sunday morning at Saltburn-on-Sea, North Yorks.
The amateur photographer said: “I saw two young boys and an adult near the cliff before the rock fall happened, I think they were looking for fossils among the stones.
“I walked past and thought it is worrying how close they are, when I came back that way I heard a loud cracking sound and turned around to see part of the cliff falling near to where they had been.”
The father-of-three quickly grabbed his camera and took shots of the collapsing rocks which fell from a height of about 60ft – it was over within three or four seconds.
He then ran over to see if the people he had seen previously had been hit by collapsing rock face and once the dust settled he was relieved to spot the boys and the man further down the beach.
Mr Pearson, a plumber, said: “There is no doubt if they had stayed on the rocks where they had been before, no ifs or buts it would have been a tragedy.”
He has called on the authorities to put up more safety warnings in the sea-side resort which is just 12 miles from Middlesbrough to alert visitors to the dangers of the cliffs which are 300ft at their highest point.
Dave Cocks, of Redcar RNLI, said: “Our advise for everyone is stay back from the cliffs, there is a danger of falling rocks which is aggravated by the increased rainfall we have had, people should also be aware that changing tides can trap beach goers under the cliffs which is an added danger.”