Polish tourist, Thai woman missing at sea off Phuket

Polish tourist, Thai woman missing at sea off Phuket

Rescuers are looking for a male Polish and a Thai woman after they went missing in the sea off Phuket island. (Photo by Achadtaya Chuenniran)
Rescuers are looking for a male Polish and a Thai woman after they went missing in the sea off Phuket island. (Photo by Achadtaya Chuenniran)

PHUKET: A search has been launched for a male Polish tourist and a Thai woman who went missing while kayaking in the sea off this southern resort province on Saturday afternoon.

The Chalong police station was informed by the operator of a kayak rental service in Muang district's tambon Rawai that a group of seven tourists -- five men and two women -- rented four kayaks and paddled off into the sea from Yanui beach at about 4.40pm.

At 6.30pm, only three of the four kayaks returned to the shore. The other kayak was carrying Mateusz Juszkiewicz, a 27-year-old tourist from Poland, and a Thai woman identified as Veerakan Sirivipakorn, 23, of Nakhon Sawan's Tak Fa district.

Polish friends in the same group told police that while they were returning to shore, they received a telephone call from Mr Juszkiewicz saysing that he and the Thai woman were still far from land and unable to make it back. They lost contact after that.

Officials at the Tambon Rawai Municipality then sought help from the 3rd Naval Area and fishing boats nearby to search for the Polish man and the Thai woman.

The search concentrated on the area between Ko Man and Ko Kaew islands where Mr Juszkiewicz last sent his location to his friends.

At 11pm, the search was called off with no trace of the two. 

Pol Maj Ekachai Siri, a Phuket tourist police officer, said late on Saturday night that a helicopter would take off from the the 8th Provincial Police Region headquarters to join the search, which would resume at 5am on Sunday. A friend of Mr Juszkiewicz would board the helicopter in the seach, the officer said.


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