The five men who died at a Sussex beauty spot yesterday (Wednesday, August 24) came to the beach together from London and were all young adults, police said.
Three men were pulled from the sea at Camber Sands around 2pm before two others were found at about 8.15pm.
Emergency services are no longer searching for anyone else with no one else reported missing.
Chief Superintendent Di Roskilly said: “We believe we now know who the men are and that they came to the beach together for the day.
“We believe they are all in their late teens and early 20s and come from the Greater London area.
“These men were not fully clothed when they were pulled from the sea but wearing clothes appropriate for being at the beach for the day.
“We have no further reports of anyone else missing from Camber and there are no on-going searches related to this incident.
“This has been an incredibly tragic incident and we are offering their next of kin support at this difficult time and our thoughts are with them.”
Emergency services were called to the beach at 2.10pm to reports of a person in the sea.
While they were on scene another person was seen in difficulty at 2.20pm and 15 minutes later a third person was rescued.
Despite best efforts to save them, they all died.
The bodies of a further two men were found in the water by members of the public between 8.15pm and 8.45pm.
David Walker, RoSPA’s leisure safety manager, said: “We are terribly sorry to hear of the tragedy at Camber Sands, and our thoughts are with those involved and their families. It’s too early in the investigation for us to comment on what happened, but we can point people towards our general water safety advice, particularly ahead of the bank holiday weekend.
“The most positive choice you can take is to go to a lifeguarded beach – check out the Marine Conservation Society’s www.goodbeachguide.co.uk for where these are.
“Be aware of tides, even if you are not intending to be in the water, as a quick-turning tide can catch out walkers, climbers, and others enjoying the shore. Strong currents are a danger, so make sure you know how to spot rip currents and know how to escape them.
“Bear in mind that the water can be colder than you expect, even in the summer months, and can lead even the strongest swimmers into trouble at any location.”
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