Fatal wave washes teenager into sea

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The Independent Online

A teenager drowned in stormy seas yesterday after being dragged into the water by a wave while on a coastal walk with friends.

A teenager drowned in stormy seas yesterday after being dragged into the water by a wave while on a coastal walk with friends.

The victim was among four teenagers who were swept into the sea near a pier at the mouth of the river Tees battered by gale-force winds. The two teenage boys and two teenage sisters were in the water for "a few minutes" at 4pm before swimming to shore. The victim was dead on arrival at Middlesbrough General Hospital.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said: "With the water temperature down to seven or eight degrees, survival time is measured in minutes rather than hours."

The weather threatened to bring chaos to many parts of Britain yesterday. Motorists in Scotland and northern England faced "horrendous" conditions due to heavy snowfall, and in eastern England downpours threatened renewed flooding.

Police in Cambridgeshire said the river Kim was expected to burst its banks. Rainfall in Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk left many minor roads impassable. The wet weather is not likely to ease today.

Drifting snow in north-east Scotland, Fife, Tayside and the Borders forced the closure of minor roads while snow ploughs battled to keep main routes clear. Newcastle United's Premiership match with Southampton was postponed.

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