Russian diver drowns off Koh Chang

Russian diver drowns off Koh Chang

TRAT — A Russian man drowned while diving to view a shipwreck sunk to create an artificial reef south of Koh Chang on Saturday.

The body of the 63-year-old Russian tourist was found floating near the wreck of the HTMS Chang at Hin Rab-Hin Luk Bat, a popular dive site, said police who were alerted around 1pm on Saturday.

The tourist, whose name was withheld pending notification of relatives, and another Russian friend had purchased dive packages from Chang Diving Co, said Ananya Nolthenius, 39, a representative of the tour firm.

The man and other divers boarded the firm’s boat to the dive site on Saturday morning.  At the site, there were snorkelling and wreck diving, she said.

At around 11.30am, the diving instructors signalled all the tourists to return to the boat to go to another site. But when they did a head count they discovered one person was missing. They asked the boat captain to survey the area to look for the missing man.

Another diving tour boat later spotted the body of the tourist floating about 200 metres away from the dive site.

Police are still investigating the cause of the accident. They believe the man might have entered the wreck without carrying a portable oxygen tank and this might have led to his death.

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