A video catches the jaw-dropping moment two young boys narrowly avoid being swept out to sea as Storm Ciaran crashed into the Kent coastline.
A man is seen standing on the Folkestone promenade watching with two boys as huge waves crash into the sea wall during the 85mph winds that struck the country on Thursday.
Seeing a break in the swell, the children start to run along the concrete walkway in a desperate bid to get to safety as their father walks behind them.
One of the boys lagging behind is wiped out completely as seawater scales the flood defences rising up the stairs behind him.
FOLKESTONE: Couple of kids lucky not to have been knocked down by waves and swept under the railings into the sea during Storm Ciaran yesterday. pic.twitter.com/1ajOMTJdLt
— Kent 999s (@Kent_999s) November 3, 2023
Luckily he manages to pull himself up and clamber to the safety of the stairs in the clip being filmed by a helpless onlooker.
The man behind them walks calmly through the swell several metres behind the boys.
There were no injuries reported.
It came as the RNLI advised people to “exercise extreme caution if visiting the shoreline, especially along exposed cliffs, seafronts and piers”.
“We’ve seen a number of people in perilous situations where the outcome could have been far more serious,” a spokesman said when asked about the Folkestone near miss by Kent Online.
“We know that around 150 people accidently lose their lives in UK and Irish waters each year and slips, trips and falls can be a major factor in these kind of incidents.
“Over half of those who drown each year had no intention of entering the water.
“We would strongly advise anyone wanting to experience extreme weather around the coast to respect the water and watch from a safe distance.
On Saturday the Met Office warned of more flooding and travel chaos as it announced a yellow weather notice for heavy rain across the south of England.
Although Storm Ciaran has largely eased, the warning has been issued to last from 5am on Saturday to 11.59pm – stretching from Kent to Cornwall.
The Met Office said the storm had now moved into the North Sea, but parts of southern England especially would continue to see heavy rain on Saturday.
It comes after Storm Ciaran battered the south coast and the Channel Islands with heavy rain and gusts of up to 100mph on Thursday, leaving nearly 150,000 homes without power.