Police reported that Chen Hangsheng, 62, from Shanghai, was on an island tour organised by Jie Yun Co Ltd.
The tour group departed Chalong Pier on board the Pako, helmed by Capt Samruay Moranin, and arrived Koh Racha Yai at 1:30pm, led by tour guide Suthee Maliwan, 24, reported police.
They were all wearing a life jackets, Mr Suthee told police.
“Mr Chen was unconscious and his body gone into shock. We helped him up onto the boat and the boat captain helped him with CPR.
“Mr Chen was taken back on land by a speedboat called ‘Yamila 5’. He died while he was being transferred to land.”
Lt Sakkarin Saengcharoen of the Chalong Police told The Phuket News today (April 24) that doctors had confirmed that Mr Chen had died of asphyxiation.
“The tour guide told me that all tourists got into the water to snorkel. Not long after someone noticed that Mr Chen was not moving.
“Mr Chen had fallen unconscious, but was still breathing, though very faintly. They rushed him back to Chalong Pier and performed CPR on him en route, but he passed away before they arrived at the pier,” Lt Sakkarin said.
However, they did report that Mr Chen checked in to the APK Resort & Spa in Patong with four family members on Friday (April 21). The family was to check out this Wednesday (April 26).
Police also confirmed that Chinese embassy officials in Thailand had been informed of Mr Chen’s death and that his body was being kept at Vachira Phuket Hospital in Phuket Town.