A man has drowned in front of horrified crowds at one of Malta’s busiest resorts after being swept into the sea by a large wave.
The 26-year-old had gone down steps close to the water’s edge by the promenade in Sliema when he was when he was pulled under the water and dragged out to sea.
Shocked eyewitnesses watched in horror as two of his friends jumped in to the water to try to pull him to safety.
One woman posted on Facebook: ‘I saw it all happen, it was terrifying.
‘His two friends tried to save him but the sea current was far too strong.’
An Armed Forces of Malta search and rescue helicopter was scrambled to the scene, near Exiles in Sliema, at around 4.15pm on Thursday.
An ambulance took the two men to hospital while the military searched for their friend, who was found soon after but died after a few minutes.
Police revealed the victim was from Ukraine but lived in St Julian’s.
A spokesman for Malta Police told 89.7 Bay: ‘This is a very tragic incident which has resulted in a man sadly losing his life.
‘As we work to establish the full circumstances of, we urge anyone who witnessed the incident or perhaps have information that could assist, to make contact with the police.
‘Given the recent weather conditions we’d urge members of the public to take care, especially when near coastal or beach areas.’
Witnesses described the weather conditions at the time as ‘squally’ with strong winds battering the northern Maltese coast.
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Original article found on 897 Bay News