An elderly British drowned on Koh Samet on Sunday afternoon after he got drunk with his friends and then decided to go swimming.
“We were notified about the drowning of a foreigner on Koh Samet at around 14:00,” Pol Maj Wirad Yodsao from Phe Provincial Police Station said. Police and local rescue workers immediately went to the island in Rayong province to investigate the death.
The incident occurred in the Putsa Bay, which is also called Tabtim Bay. “When we arrived, dozens of foreigners and Thais had gathered at the beach,” Pol Maj Wirad remembered. Rescue workers used a small motorboat to drive out and pull the man out of the sea.
“We identified the man as Mr Charles Graham, 60 years old,” investigator Pol Maj Wirad said. “He was a tourist from England and intended to spend his holiday on Koh Samet.
Police rushed Mr Graham to the 23-kilometres distanced Rayong Hospital on the mainland. However, upon arrival, doctors could not do more than pronounce him dead.
Pol Maj Wirad: “We found out that Mr Graham had been drinking liquor with his friends before the accident.” He then decided to go swimming in the nearby Putsa Bay.
When Mr Graham had not returned ten minutes later, one of his drinking companions decided to check on him but could not spot him in the water. Fearing the worst, he shouted for help to find the lost friend.
A tourist who was swimming several hundred metres far from the beach found the body of Mr Graham. He pulled the body closer to the shore to make it easier for rescuers to recover the body before rushing him to the hospital.
“We are quite confident that the alcohol in his body was the reason for his drowning,” Pol Maj Wirad said. “Maybe he was too drunk to swim, or he drank until he lost consciousness while swimming.”