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3 children die after boat overturns off Normandy coast

PARIS — French authorities are investigating the deaths of three children after a speedboat overturned just off the Normandy coast.

All three adults aboard the boat survived the accident Monday near the town of Agon-Coutainville. The identities of the dead and survivors were not released.

The regional maritime authority said Tuesday that a rescue operation was launched after a witness reported seeing the speedboat in trouble about 800 meters (yards) off the coast in the English Channel.

Volunteer rescuer Pascal Dutot described finding the 5.5-meter-long boat partially under water, and “the most difficult thing was to extract (the passengers) from the cabin, to break the windscreen.”

He described the conditions as manageable for a larger boat but said the waters were choppy for such a small vessel.

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