By Anna Ellis •
Updated: 19 Jun 2022 • 16:19
Kitesurfer is killed and eight are injured after sudden "mini Tornado". Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0
The tragedy happened on the beach of Villers-sur-Mer, Normandy in France.
The strong gales hospitalised five people along with the 31-year-old kite surfer who died instantly after smashing into a restaurant on the seafront.
One person had ‘disappeared’ after being swept away at sea but has since been found well after the National Society of Sea Rescue (SNSM) and a helicopter had been mobilised to find him.
The deceased man is a 31-year-old kitesurfer originally from Paris who had a second home in Normandy.
Thierry Granturco, the mayor of Villers-sur-Mer, called the winds a “violence as we have never known on our coast.”
“The winds lasted 20-25 minutes from 8:30.pm on Saturday, June 18. The gusts of wind carried away the garden furniture on seafront terraces causing further injuries.”
“It blew more and more violently and it ended with a mini-tornado,” Thierry Granturco added.
This unexpected weather phenomenon was not announced by Meteo-France, the organisation which monitors weather events.
Thierry Granturco confirmed that: “We had communication with Météo France who had informed us that they had not been able to anticipate this kind of mini tornado.”
He added:”‘We knew we were going to have strong winds, they were announced at the very end of the evening, or even in the night, but we did not think that they would be of this violence.”
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Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.
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