Foils can be hot launched as long as it is not inflated. The kite then inflates on its way to the zenith, slowly powering up as it gets into more and more of the "right" shape before getting completely inflated at the zenith.
In high wind conditions, however it can be very dangerous.
How much space is there downwind at the sandpoole site?
Hope the guy gets a full recovery.
No, bad advice, closed cell water foils should never be hot launched, unless its really light winds.
There is a very simple technique to get a decent amount of air into them prior to launch.
Stand on one tip, hold the other tip above your head at the edge of the window, the airflow will fill the foil quite quickly in strong winds, pile sand on the upwind tip that you were standing on.
Go to bar and hook in for launch, rehearsing SRR, and make sure leash and depower system is within reach and operating.
Launch to the edge of the window, and then keep the kite LOW and GO into the water asap, do not bring any kite to the top of the window in strong winds, keep it low in the direction of the water, and garab your board as it drags you in to the water.
Body drag out with the board in front of you so you are more than a line length from the beach then bring the kite overhead and do your water start.
@PMU You are a tosser mate.
PS NEO bar and safety release are sub standard compared to all push away below the bar systems and would have contributed to the accident from the description of the person that went to the poor guys aid.