Indian Couple Drowned in Thailand After Boat Capsizes
BANGKOK: An Indian couple drowned today after their chartered long-tailed boat capsized in bad weather off southern Thailand's popular Krabi province known for its pristine beaches, the latest incident to hit the country's tourism industry.
The two were not immediately identified by the police. Police said the two tourists were heading to a pier at the Hat Nopparat Thara-Mu Koh Phi Phi National Park after a sightseeing tour of the area when their boat ran into a heavy squall and high waves battered the craft off Ao Nang beach, overturning it.
The two, reportedly not wearing life jackets, drowned in the choppy waters and rescuers recovered their bodies after an hour.
Boat driver Ekkapong Kinglek, 25, survived after managing to cling to the boat which was later swept ashore on Ao Nang beach.
Local police officer Rittichai Wangsud said Ekkapong would be charged over the deaths and could face up to 10 years in jail, Bangkok Post said.
Meanwhile, a Belgian tourist fell off a boat while travelling between Koh Tao and Koh Phangan earlier in the day, taking the today's toll to three.
The deaths come as officials in the tourism industry seek to persuade visitors that Thailand remains safe following the brutal murders of British tourists on the island of Koh Tao on September 15.