Connect with us


Death of Korean tourist mired in murky Phuket dive company waters



PHUKET: Police have confirmed that they are investigating the death of a Korean tourist who was pulled unconscious from the water while diving near Coral Island, off Phuket’s southeast coast, on Saturday.

Kim Sang Min, 47, had been in the water for just a few minutes when the guide saw him floating on the surface shortly before 10am.

“The tour operator rushed him by speedboat to Chalong Pier, where an ambulance from Vachira Phuket Hospital was waiting,” said Lt Thapanan Akaraguntarakorn of the Phuket Tourist Police.

The ambulance crew administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and a medical team at the hospital continued life-saving efforts, but were unable to revive Mr Kim. He was declared dead at 11:27am.

“[Mr Kim] was diving, not snorkelling,” Capt Patiwat Yodkwan, the Chalong Police officer in charge of the investigation, told the Phuket Gazette this afternoon.

“At this stage we believe the death was most likely an accident. However, we are waiting for the results of a post-mortem examination to confirm the cause of death.”

Marine Police Inspector Chatchai Sakdee confirmed to the Gazette that the Marine Police have no jurisdiction in investigating Mr Kim’s death.

“We are notified of any deaths at sea in the waters off Phuket as a standard procedure. I did hear about the incident, but the Marine Police have yet to be formally notified,” Lt Col Chatchai explained.

“Nonetheless, the primary responsibility for investigating fatal incidents on the water remains with the police station responsible for the area in question – which in this case is the Chalong Police.”

The boat* was chartered out to a tour company in order to provide a combined diving and snorkelling day trip.

“The only person on the boat from our company was the captain. All the other staff were from the company that hired the boat,” a staffer at the company that owned the boat* explained.

The staffer declined to name the “third-party” company that hired the boat, citing legal reasons as the incident is under investigation.

The death of Mr Kim during the day trip on Saturday follows the death of 29-year-old Chinese tourist Ting Hong, who drowned while snorkelling off Racha Yai Island on April 19 (story here).

* At the request of the company that owned the boat, the Gazette has removed the name of the dive company and the name of the boat involved in the incident.

— Kritsada Mueanhawong


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Destination Guide14 hours ago

Best areas to live in Phuket (2022)

Video15 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Fears of shenanigans in Mountain B Pub fire investigation

Travel15 hours ago

5 vineyards and wineries in Thailand all wine lovers should know

Sponsored1 day ago

Super luxury villas in Phuket with breathtaking ocean views

Thailand15 hours ago

Thai neitzens angry at SUV driver using a siren just to use toilet

Thailand15 hours ago

New poll says people from Thailand more relaxed about Covid-19

Thailand16 hours ago

Rama 2 Road guilty of being a repeat accident offender

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand17 hours ago

Body of one teacher found in double suicide pact in SE Thailand

Thailand18 hours ago

Son who tried to starve mother to death dies of TB in NE Thailand

Crime19 hours ago

Mystery 911 emergency service call turns out to be a monkey

Thailand19 hours ago

Hot gran bowled over by Shane Warne before he died in Thailand

Thailand20 hours ago

Soi Dog Foundation pledges to neuter 1 million animals in 2 years

Thailand20 hours ago

EPL praises Thailand for crackdown on illegal footie sites

Pattaya21 hours ago

Sick German man fails in suicide attempt in Pattaya

Video21 hours ago

Thailand approves all time high electricity price | GMT

Economy22 hours ago

Instant noodles, a staple budget food, fighting to increase prices

Thailand11 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism1 year ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11