Former UTV presenter Brian Black has died after his car plunged into water at Strangford Harbour, Q Radio News has confirmed.
The television star was rushed to the Royal Victoria in Belfast by ambulance but died from his injuries.
Among those to pay tribute to Brian, was his ex UTV colleague, Gerry Kelly.
Mr Kelly tweeted: "I am devastated to learn of the tragic death of my former UTV colleague Brian Black. May he rest in peace."
Photographer Kevin McAuley penned: "Very sad news breaking about Brian Black he was one of a kind great environmentalist, programme maker and presenter.
"What a sad way to go. I worked long side Brian on many shoots in North Antrim Fair Head and Rathlin Island. Brian RIP."
As well as tributes from his former colleagues, Brian's fans have rushed to share messages about the journalist.
One fan penned: "Sorry to hear about Brian’s passing. Fine journalist."
A second shared: ""Sad news about Brian Black."
Another added: "Desperately sad news. Brian was a true gentleman. R.I.P.
A third said: "Oh no. What an awful tragedy. He was a fine journalist."
A spokesperson for the RNLI said: "Portaferry RNLI’s inshore lifeboat was requested to launch at 11.30am this morning by Belfast Coastguard following a report of a car in the water.
Portaferry RNLI and Portaferry Coastguard recovered a casualty from the water who was subsequently transferred to hospital.
"A search is ongoing to ensure no other casualties are involved."
The NIAS said it received a 999 call at 11.42am on Tuesday.
Two emergency crews were dispatched, and assisted by the charity Air Ambulance.
A spokesman said one male patient was brought to Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast by road ambulance.
In a tweet about the ongoing incident, Kellie Armstrong Alliance MLA said "Shocked to hear a car has had to be removed from Strangford Lough today.
"I’m aware the Coastguard rescued one person who has been taken to hospital. I hope the person is not injured and makes a speedy recovery.
"Local information suggests this is a terrible accident."
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