Boat driver on the run after striking British diver near Koh Tao Island
A boat driver in southern Thailand fled after he struck a British tourist with the boat’s propeller off the coast of Koh Tao yesterday.
According to police, the 20-year-old British woman nearly lost her leg in the accident, which occured while she was taking a diving lesson with other tourists from a company called Scuba Shark on the western side of the island.
The boat’s turbine hit her leg while she and the other tourists were swimming to shore, breaking two of her bones and causing her to bleed profusely.
Rescue workers brought her to the closest hospital on nearby Koh Samui, where she is now recovering, according to medical workers.
Police said the boat’s captain, identified as Boonrord Klubnak, fled the scene after the incident and is currently on the run.
Koh Tao, which is located in the Gulf of Thailand, is a popular diving spot for foreign tourists. However, the idyllic resort island has made national news several times in the past year because of unusual deaths of foreigners.
In September 2014, two British tourists – Hannah Witheridge and David Miller – were found murdered on Sairee beach. Witheridge was also raped, according to police. Two Burmese migrant workers have been arrested, and accused of killing the two and raping Witheridge.
The two suspects are being held at a prison to await trial. They have denied the allegation.
In December 2014, a Norwegian tourist was also killed near Koh Tao island after a boat turbine struck his head while he was diving in the sea.
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