PHI PHI ISLANDS: The drowning of a Korean tourist while on a Hana Tour to Phi Phi Don Island last month is not being treated as suspicious, the Gazette has learned.
Sen Sgt Maj Suwan Tuamsri of Krabi Tourist Police told the Gazette the drowning death of 35-year-old Kang Kyong while she was swimming with her tour group at Loh Dalam Bay was first reported by a Tourist Police volunteer about 1 pm that day, he said.
Sen Sgt Maj Suwan confirmed the cause of death as accidental drowning, but said that he had no further details.
The case is now closed, he added.
Speaking to the Gazette on condition of anonymity, a staff member of Hana Tour Co Ltd, one of South Korea’s largest tour operators, confirmed that Mrs Kang had come to Phuket on holiday with her husband, her four-year-old son, her younger sister and her younger brother.
On February 27, she went to the Phi Phi Islands with her family, but without her husband, who stayed behind in a hotel in Phuket, the source said.
“We were told by a guide [on that tour] that she swam away from the main group, but we don’t know why she drowned.
“Our company took all the proper steps after she died: we reported her death to Phi Phi police and paid for the cremation and for other family members to come to Phuket to collect her ashes. We took care of everything for them until they returned to Korea,” she said.
Mrs Kang’s body was cremated at Wat Kosit Wiharn on February 29.
Despite repeated attempts by the Gazette, the manager of Hana Tour (Asia) has been continually unavailable for comment.
In 2005, Hana Tour won the Excellent Travel Packages Award from the Tourism Authority of Thailand for its tour packages, which include Phuket and the Phi Phi Islands.
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