NAKHON SI THAMMARAT: A British diver was found dead on Saturday afternoon in Talay Songhong park, a popular diving site in Thung Yai district in the far South of Thailand.
The Briton, a 60-year-old expat resident of Thailand, still had his diving gear on when his body was found. There were no signs of assault, and his diving companions were at the scene when police arrived.
The man’s name has been withheld by The Pattaya News.
Friends of the victim told police that they often dove at Talay Songhong in tambon Krungyan as it was a popular site among foreigners, said Pol Col Chokdee Rakwattanapong, chief of Thung Yai police station, who was alerted at around 2.30pm on Saturday.
The water at the site is clear and there are beautiful caves underwater, divers say. The cave is popular in Thai folklore and legends as it is known for its extreme depth and rumors of a city of Naga (Serpent people) that dwell far below. Many traditional Thai songs reference the caves, which consist of two very deep pools.
The cave is in a very remote location, about two hours from the nearest large city and medical services in Krabi. The cave is actually a sinkhole and at 198 meters one of the deepest in Thailand. Parts of the cave due to its difficulty and depth remain unexplored.
Before the incident, the Briton had been diving about 100 metres away from his friends. As they prepared to explore the caves, they noticed that their companion had been underwater for an unusually long time. Suddenly, a tank emerged on the surface and the diver was floating beneath it. His friends called local residents from a small village in the area for help.
The cause of the death has not yet been established. Police say the victim might have become exhausted while diving, developed symptoms from an illness or passed out before he drowned. His body was sent to a local hospital for a post-mortem examination, said Pol Col Chokdee.
A crowd of people gather at Talay Songhong park, a popular diving site in Thung Yai district of Nakhon Si Thammarat after a British national was found floating dead in the water. (Photo by Nujaree Raekrun)
Source: Bangkok Post, Naew Na