Photo: A man passes by the remains of a fishing boat destroyed by high waves on the south coast of French Island La Reunion, where two fishermen went missing since yesterday night due to an unexpected strong wave coming from Madagascar.
SAINT-DENIS-DE-LA REUNION, Reunion, May 14, 2007 (AFP) - Freak waves devastated parts of the French Indian Ocean island of Reunion where two fishermen were missing Sunday after their boat capsized the previous evening.
The giant waves lashed the southern port of Saint Pierre on Saturday evening sending several piers crashing down and flooding homes along the coastline. Five families had to be evacuated from their homes.
Many locals said the waves were worse than the tropical cyclone Gamede.
France's meteorological office said Saturday's waves, estimated at 11 metres (36 feet) in some places, came from the south and added that it was a "recurring phenomenon in winter" in the southern hemisphere.