Iconic rock arch falls into Malta sea, was TV, film backdrop

This is a April 2014 image of the landmark the Azure Window located just off Malta. The natural rock arch jutting off the Maltese island of Gozo, has collapsed into the sea during a storm. Malta’s prime minister called the loss on Wednesday March 8, 2017, of the iconic limestone formation “heartbreaking.” No one was injured by the fallen arch, which was also a TV and film backdrop.(Caroline Hodgson via AP)

VALLETTA, Malta (AP) — The Azure Window, a natural rock arch which jutted into the sea off Malta and was a backdrop for the “Game of Thrones” TV series, has collapsed in a storm.

Malta Prime Minister Joseph Muscat tweeted his “heartbreaking” sadness at the loss Wednesday of one of the main tourist attractions on the island of Gozo.

No one was injured.

Geologist Peter Gatt said the limestone pillar supporting the arch had given way. He attributed the collapse to years of erosion by the sea.

The Azure Window also served as a backdrop in the 1981 movie “Clash of the Titans.”

With parts of the rock formation crumbling over the years, the government last month enacted €1,500 fines ($1,580) for anyone caught walking across the arch.