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Snorkeler killed after being hit by windsurfer

A Russian snorkeler has died after being hit by windsurfer's board while she was snorkelling off Spain's Canary Islands. The 32-year-old woman is thought to have strayed into an area that was reserved for pleasure craft and was not wearing a locating buoy.

The incident happened in the water off Playa de Cueva Laya, near the town of Santa Lucia, on Monday (July 20). The woman, who was snorkelling with her boyfriend, has been named as Emilia I.

Nieves Garcia, a local town councillor said the windsurfer’s board smashed into the women when she lifted her head. She was treated by doctors on the beach but died almost instantly of blood loss because the board cut her throat.

The windsurfer has not been named but is a 41-year-old Swedish national. He was taken to the hospital after the incident to be treated for shock.

It has been reported by local press that the area she was snorkelling in is designated for windsurfing and Jet Ski use, as well as being an entry and exit point for sailing vessels. The area is not cordoned off by buoys but is meant to be clearly signposted on the beach. However, there have been some claims that a sign warning swimmers of the dangers had fallen down.

Police are treating the death as an accident. Nieves Garcia said that this was the first accident of this nature to happen in the area and said there would be a full review to ensure an accident of this nature did not happen again.

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