In Spain it is called a ‘mini-tsunami’; sudden and rapidly rising water after which the beach is largely inundated. Bathers of the Valdelagrana beach in southern Spain were startled by this rare phenomenon last weekend.
A number of bathers initially panicked slightly when the sea level rose abnormally and a strong current came up and the water suddenly went much further than the usual high tide line. There was no high wave, as is the case with a tsunami. However, the sea moved towards the boulevard in just a few minutes.
Bathers rush off beach after rapidly rising water
The sea water rose just after lunch. At the time, many guests were recovering from a delicious meal on the terrace and at the beach bars. The beachgoers jumped from their chairs when they saw the sea wash over the beach and ran to their beds in an attempt to save their belongings.
Spanish journalist films a mini-tsunami shortly after it started
People quickly packed their things and stood knee-high in the water in the middle of the beach and quietly moved towards the boulevard. The sea eventually flooded the sunbeds, umbrellas and trash cans on the beach.
A Spanish journalist shared this video of the suddenly rising tide on Twitter. The worst panic has now passed here, but it is easy to see how strong the current of the water is and how the water takes up a large part of the beach.
ALERTA: la fuerte subida de la marea en la playa de #Valdelagrana del Puerto de Santa María provoca escenas de pánico y preocupación entre los usuarios que corren para ponerse a resguardo ante la crecida del mar: este vídeo circula por todas las redes. @E112Andalucia pic.twitter.com/9myRWanh0x
— Pepe Contreras (@pepeconjerez) August 13, 2022
Very rare phenomenon happened several times before in Spain
The Spanish news site Niusdiario.es spoke to a number of beachgoers and several people said that they have been coming here for years but have not seen such a phenomenon before. However, in August 2021, the same thing happened in Santa Pola on the Costa Blanca. The beach was also flooded there in the early morning.
In July 2018 there was a similar phenomenon in two places in the Balearic Islands. In Porto Cristo on Mallorca and Ciutadella on Menorca, the water then flooded the entire beach and part of the boulevard and the roads behind it.