Tornado's and violent hailstorms killed six tourists, including two children in northern Greece, late on Wednesday, police said.
Estimates of the wounded ranged from at least 30 to more than 100 after the Suddenly and violently, Halkidiki stormed near the city of Thessaloniki on Wednesday evening.
Trees were uprooted, vans were turned and motorcycles were scattered through the streets by stormy winds, while rain and hail pelted the streets.
Videos from Chalkidiki, which is located on the Greek mainland and overlook the Aegean Sea, show lighting that hits a tower flank while wind and rain rub against vehicles.
Six tourists were killed after an & # 39; unprecedented & # 39; storm hit the Halkidiki region in northern Greece (photos & lighting hits an apartment building)
Witnesses said the storm suddenly struck and lasted only about 20 minutes, which, according to predictors, was highly unusual – especially at this time of the year
Trees were uprooted, cars were knocked down and buildings were damaged by the cruel storm
Two older Czech tourists were killed when strong wind and water blotted out their travel trailer, police said.
Elsewhere in the region, a woman and an 8-year-old boy, both Romanians, were killed after a roof collapsed in a restaurant in Nea Plagia.
A man and a boy, both Russians, died after a tree collapsed near their hotel in the seaside town of Potidea, the authorities said.
According to the harbor police, a fisherman in his sixties was also missing.
Such heavy weather is unusual in Greece, where the summers are usually hot and dry. Meteorologist Klearxos Marousakis described conditions as & # 39; extremely unusual & # 39; for this time of year.
An overturned vehicle is seen on a beach in Sozopoli village in the Halkidiki region, Greece
A Russian man and his son – presumably two years old – were killed by a falling tree, while two older Czechs died when their caravans blew away (photo, damage in the village of Nea Plagia)
A Romanian woman and her eight-year-old child died when a roof collapsed at the restaurant where they were hiding (pictured, a damaged playground in Porto Carras)
& # 39; It is the first time in my 25-year career that I have experienced such a thing & # 39 ;, Athansios Kaltsas, director of the Nea Moudania Medical Center, where many of the wounded were treated for fractures, told Greek television .
& # 39; It was so abrupt and so sudden & he said.
Kaltsas said patients to the clinic ranged from 8 months to over 70. Some suffered head injury from trees and other falling objects.
Meteorologists predict that it would continue to rain in the area until around 9 a.m. on Thursday.
Estimates of the wounded ranged from at least 30 to more than 100, as doctors described the storm as & # 39; unprecedented & # 39; for this time of year (pictured, damage in Nea Plagia)
A man is walking on a damaged terrace after heavy storms in the village of Nea Plagia, Greece
Witnesses described the storm as & # 39; abrupt & # 39; and & # 39; suddenly & # 39 ;, and said it took & # 39; n 20 minutes
The freak storm lasted only about 20 minutes, according to witnesses interviewed by the state television ERT.
The authorities declared Halkidiki in a state of emergency and the newly appointed civil protection minister of Greece would visit early on Thursday.
At least 140 rescue workers were involved in the operation, said emergency relief officer Vassilis Varthakoyannis.
The minister for civil protection, Michalis Chryssohoidis, visits the site on Thursday morning.
The storms came after the temperature in Greece in the last two days rose to 37 degrees Celsius (98 degrees Fahrenheit).
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