A third man has drowned in the same stretch of canal as two others within the space of six months.

The Canal and River Trust and Wigan Council have vowed to 'consider further improvements' after Darren Hunt, 47, was today confirmed as having drowned on Monday (March 1) after being reported missing the previous night, Manchester Evening News reports.

Mr Hunt's death follows those of Matt Dutton and Mikey Greenall within a four week period in August and September last year.

Both deaths were ruled as accidental following inquests.

All three men have drowned on the same stretch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, in Wigan, between locks 77 and 83.

Receive newsletters with the latest news, sport and what's on updates from the Liverpool ECHO by signing up here

Following Mr Greenall's inquest last week, senior coroner Timothy Brennand told Bolton Coroner's Court that he would be writing a 'letter of concern' to Wigan Council and the Canal and River Trust.

Responding in a joint statement, they said: "The Canal and River Trust and Wigan Council are greatly saddened to learn of this further tragic death and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the man who has lost his life.

Helplines and support groups

The following are helplines and support networks for people to talk to, mostly listed on the NHS Choices website

"Following the deaths of Matthew Dutton and Mikey Greenall, the Trust and Wigan Council have established a Water Safety Partnership with other key stakeholders, including Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue, to look at ways to improve water safety in the area.

"The Water Safety Partnership will be launching a water safety campaign and will be working with local community groups and other stakeholders to make sure that people who visit the canal and Council water bodies are safe.

Keep up to date with what's going on in your area by entering your postcode below

"We will continue to work together to consider further improvements and will be engaging with the coroner to address his concerns following the recent inquest.

A petition has been set up to try and get barriers or lighting put up along the canal.