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Chinese tourist drowns in Phuket no-swim zone

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PHUKET: A Chinese tourist drowned after being swept out to sea in a red-flag zone on Karon Beach yesterday, confirmed police.

Chunhua Qi, 43, was rushed to Patong Hospital after lifeguards were able to recover him. He was pronounced dead by doctors.

“According to the tour leader, Mr Qi was swimming when a wave suddenly came and washed him away,” said Lt Col Jongserm Preecha of the Patong Police. “Lifeguards were immediately notified.”

It took lifeguards about five to 10 minutes to reach Mr Qi, who had been swimming in a no-swim zone that was not being closely monitored, explained Kata-Karon chief lifeguard Uten Singsom.

“Red flags were already in place, meaning no one was allowed to swim. However, tourist just disobey the rules,” Mr Uten said. “Lifeguards do their best to help tourists, but please do not forget that lifeguards risk their lives when they have to save tourists who put themselves in dangerous situations.”

The Chinese consulate has been notified of Mr Qi’s death.

— Kritsada Mueanhawong

 

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