9,000 appeal for increased river safety following Euan Coulthard’s disappearance

Search moves onto river itself from banks, body discovered NOT that of the Law second year

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A petition calling for increased river safety has garnered nearly 10,000 signatures in under 24 hours.

It follows the disappearance of Euan Coulthard, the third Durham Uni student to have gone missing in a little over a year.

The appeal, started by Robyn Travers, has been widely shared across social media by university students.

It calls for greater safety measures to be put in place along the river including  CCTV cameras, added lighting, and railings, and has already received support from local councillor David Stoker, who said a meeting was being held this Wednesday to discuss the matter further.

However, Professor Simon Hackett of St Mary’s College, of which Euan is a member, called for its signatories to “consider the impact of such campaigns on Euan’s family and friends.”

In an email to students, he said: “We are aware that there is already at least one petition being promoted on Facebook linking Euan’s disappearance to river safety, urging action from Durham County Council, etc.

“Whilst we understand that this is a reflection of people’s desire to act, our view is that there will be a time for reflection and consideration of appropriate actions. At the moment we do not know the full circumstances of Euan’s disappearance.”

Robyn Travers, who started the petition, told The Tab: “I am so overwhelmed with all the positive feedback from Euan’s friends, I had no idea this petition would build such momentum like it has.

“I just hope Euan is found safe and sound, and some extra measures can be put in place to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

“In response to Professor Hackett who I am sure is also concerned about the safety of the community, I have been flooded with inbox messages from Euan’s friends thanking me.

“So creating awareness for Euan and that he still needs to be found is only a good thing, and if this petition means safety measures are put in place whether it’s more education, railings, CCTV, whatever – at least notice has now been taken.

“I would like to also clarify further that it is about making the city safer, like the petition states, not just the river.

“He makes a valid point that no one knows what has happened to Euan. Hence why I think some extra surveillance in the city might be viable here.”

The search for Euan, which on Friday was restricted to the banks of the Wear, has now moved onto the river itself.

A body discovered downstream in Sunderland yesterday is thought to be that of Colin Pine, who disappeared from Washington on December 21st.