French television is reporting that a man who tried to cross the English Channel on a homemade "flyboard" has failed in his attempt.
CNews and BFM television cited people close to inventor Franky Zapata as saying his journey was cut short when he tried to descend for a refuelling stop about halfway across the Channel but fell in the water.
After careful preparations Zapata took off Thursday (25 JULY 2019) from the French coastal town of Sangatte fastened to the small flying platform he designed.
He hoped to make it across 36 kilometers (22.4 miles) to the Dover area in southeast England in about 20 minutes.
He was carrying a power pack full of kerosene, and was planning to refuel from a boat partway across.
Zapata wowed crowds in Paris on Bastille Day, whirling over European leaders on the flyboard.
But crossing the windy, ship-filled Channel is a much tougher challenge.
He scheduled Thursday's flight to coincide with the 110th anniversary of the first flight across the Channel, by French aviator Louis Bleriot on July 25, 1909 - who also left from Sangatte after multiple failed attempts.
The beach where Zapata took off Thursday bears Bleriot's name.