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Chinese woman, 22, drowns at Phuket beach

Chinese woman, 22, drowns at Phuket beach

PHUKET: The body of a 22-year-old Chinese tourist who disappeared in strong surf on Saturday (Sept 30) was found washed ashore at Kata Beach last night (Oct 1).

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By Eakkapop Thongtub

Monday 2 October 2017, 09:37AM


Capt Suwisit Kirirak of the Karon Police was notified by local residents at 10:50pm that the woman’s body had been found washed up on the sand.

The woman, Shi Yiqing, from Jiangxi, was last seen playing in the surf with three friends at about 3pm, Capt Suwisit told The Phuket News this morning (Oct2).

“A search was launched by lifeguards and a team of rescue workers from Karon Municipality, but they were unable to find her,” he said.

Ms Shi’s body was taken to Patong Hospital.

“Chinese authorities have been notified,” Capt Suwisit confirmed.

Capt Suwisit expressed dire concern for people swimming at the beaches without the protection of lifeguards.

“We seriously need lifeguards at Kata and Karon beaches. We don’t have them anymore,” Capt Suwisit said.

“I heard that three people were rescued by local surfers at Kata and Karon beaches,” he added.

Asked who was patrolling Kata and Karon beaches to ensure surf safety now that the lifeguards have departed, Capt Suwisit replied, “I honestly don’t know.”

Capt Suwisit urged people to be careful if they intend to swim in the surf while the southwest monsoon continues to whip up strong surf, creating strong rip currents, along Phuket’s west coast.

“My advice is that if you find yourself being pulled away from the shore, please just focus on keeping your head above water then slowly swim at an angle back toward the beach,” he said.

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Rich 44 | 05 October 2017 - 07:45:11

Until this is resolved,China should include two or three lifeguards with each tour group

Rob Brander | 04 October 2017 - 16:40:19

What is going on with the lifeguard situation? I visited these beaches several years ago to give a rip current demonstration and was surprised how strong the rips were. I thought the presence of lifeguards was improving, not getting worse! It's madness during the monsoon season!

Sue Yu2 | 02 October 2017 - 17:52:05

There were no flags & no sign of any officials or 'lifeguards' @ Karon yesterday, but there were lots of people in the sea close to dusk. Dangerous but no protection.

BenPendejo | 02 October 2017 - 13:52:54

Well that didn't take long.  Without a doubt, the officials responsible for this most irresponsible cancelling of lifeguard services must be considered complicit in this poor young lady's drowning.  Just a crying shame that this girl's precious life is over at such a young age, all because of a stupid decision by Phuket officials.  Very very sad.

simon01 | 02 October 2017 - 10:39:20

Sad as it is. These stupid people do insist in going in the areas red flagged even when at best they are weak swimmers in bad conditions. Then the way the Phuket government are committed to tourist safety remove the fully trained life guards. These life guards are a massive asset to Phuket. They are well trained by Aussie lifeguard trainers and are 100% committed to saving lives even when after ho...

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