The sky beyond Bordighera and in the eastern side of the Côté d’Azur was filled with a plum of black smoke in the late afternoon of Tuesday, July 12. 

The cause of the pollution was a boat that burst into flames, more specifically a 17 metre-long vessel called Sounjarello, according to Italian publication

The only passenger on the boat at the time of the fateful fire was the captain, a Frenchman in his fifties who managed to send out an SOS before leaping into the sea to escape the flames. 

The captain was rescued by the Italian Coast Guard from San Remo and fortunately did not suffer any serious injuries. Nevertheless he was taken to the hospital in San Remo by his Italian rescuers.

The boat reportedly sank at 17:35, but the cause  of the fire is not yet known.