A KITEBOARDER died following a horror accident at Compton beach, when a gust of wind swept him into the air and slammed him against the cliff face.

An inquest into the death of Arthur Thomas Hutchinson, known to everyone as Tom, was held at the Isle of Wight Coroner's Court on Thursday.

The inquest heard Tom, 52, was picked up by the wind and twice crashed into the cliff, suffering multiple traumatic injuries including broken ribs and vertebrae.

The accident happened on August 7 last year. Tom, who lived nearby at Atherfield, was kitesurfing at Compton as he waited for his family to join him.

Witness Dan Clarke told the inquest: "I was walking along the top of the cliffs at Compton when I noticed a kitesurfer coming in. I thought it was odd as it was very windy.

"All of a sudden he took off — away from the water and into the air, and collided with the rock face. As he fell, the wind pushed him into the cliff a second time.

"I immediately called the paramedics. Once they arrived, I helped them carry their equipment down onto the beach.

"I could see that the man was semi-concious, but his eyes were beginning to roll back."

Tom was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital. His coma scale score was three, the lowest reading, and doctors determined nothing could be done to save him.

Read more: Windsurfer who crashed into cliffs at Compton Bay rushed to hospital after receiving extreme injuries

Isle of Wight Coroner Caroline Sumeray said: "Tom Hutchinson was, by all accounts, a very accomplished sailor and kiteboarder.

"But, as anyone who is familiar with certain extreme sports can attest, there are some risks that just cannot be controlled.

"He was caught up by a gust of wind that slammed him into the cliff wall not once, but twice.

"I hope it is of some comfort that, given the assessment of doctors, it is most likely he would not have been aware of any of this.

"He didn't suffer, he was past that."

She concluded Tom died as the result of an accident.

Speaking to the County Press after Tom's death, his family said he had died doing what he loved.

Read more: Tributes paid to kiteboarder Tom Hutchinson who died at Compton

His father Francis said: "Tom’s work took him all over the world, which suited his free-spirited, charismatic personality, and he made many life-long friends in the process.

"But the draw of the Island was always with him and he returned to his cliff-top cottage whenever he could to pursue his great love of kiteboarding in the Back of the Wight."

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