A BOOM has been deployed by the Environment Agency around a boat which sank in York's River Foss earlier today to contain any oil which might leak from it.

The agency tweeted that the boat was not presenting a flood risk and its owners had been contacted to make arrangements for its removal from the Foss Basin.

The boat's owner, Arron Stuart, of York, told The Press it was not clear at this stage why it sank, and it wouldn't be possible to tell until water levels in the river had fallen and it could be hauled out of the water and examined.

He said he knew it had gone down quickly at just before 9am and, while he did not suspect foul play, this could not be ruled out until it was possible to inspect the vessel in detail.

He said he had bought the 32 ft twin engined diesel pleasure cruiser as scrap and had been gradually renovating it.

He added that there had been very little diesel in the tank and so it should not present a pollution problem.

North Yorkshire Police said it was called out to the sinking in the Foss Basin, near Castle Mills Bridge and just upstream of the Foss Barrier, at 9.30am today.

It said York Rescue Boat and North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Services were also called to the scene but checks confirmed there was no one on board the vessel or at risk and they had left the scene, with the incident left in the hands of the Environment Agency.