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Korean woman drowns off Sapi
Published on: Wednesday, January 03, 2007
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style="text-transform: uppercase;">Kota Kinabalu: A 48-year-old Korean woman drowned while swimming off Pulau Sapi just before noon Tuesday.Baek Mi Sook was taken out of the water by Sabah Parks' life guards but pronounced dead on arrival at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) later.

Baek and seven to eight other members of her tour group were on tour at the island that day, which happened to be the last day of their stay in the State. They were due to fly back on the night flight.

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The group, which arrived on Dec. 30, had just returned to Kota Kinabalu from Mount Kinabalu the day before. Guided by a Korean tour operator, the group departed from the ferry terminal to Pulau Sapi at about 9am Tuesday.

Sabah Parks life guard, Harry Rapiti, and his colleague Mark Julius, both 20, spotted Baek experiencing difficulty while swimming about 50 to 60 metres from the beach.

Both swam to get her but by the time they reached her, her body was already under water.

Harry, who has been working as a life guard there for three years, said they gave her CPR, managed to pulled her to shore and helped her to a boat for the Sutera Harbour Resort jetty.

The boat reached the marine the jetty at about 12.05pm and using a vehicle provided by the resort, she was rushed to the QEH. She arrived at the hospital at about 12.23pm but she was already dead.

Baek was not wearing a life jacket at the time of the incident, according to Harry. When met, the group's Korean tour operator said he already warned all the group members to wear the life jacketsw that were provided to them.

"Probably she did not wear because it was too tight," he said. On Nov. 20, an eight-year-old South Korean girl was stung to death by jelly fish at the same island.


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