The remains of an 18-year-old South Korean national named Kyeong Young-an were found in the waters of Kampung Gayang, Sabah early on Sunday morning at 6.30am (30th June).
According to The Star, the young tourist went missing on Friday evening (28th June) after he went swimming with his friends at a beach in Karambunai in Pulau Sepanggar. Kyeong was reportedly swept out to the open sea by strong waves.
The tourist’s friends soon noticed that he was missing and asked resort workers for help to find him. When he couldn’t be found, one of his friends decided to file a police report, prompting a search and rescue operation involving 18 firemen from the Kota Kinabalu Fire and Rescue Department to began later that day at 4.17pm.
Search and rescue operations continued on Saturday (29th June), but Kyeong wasn’t found until a fisherman spotted his remains in the water on Sunday morning. Sabah Fire and Rescue Department Operations Centre supervisor Mohd Hasbi Hajat was quoted as saying,
“We dispatched a team to retrieve the body before proceeding to hand over his remains to the police for further action. The operation ended at 8.02am.”
In light of this tragic news, Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Christina Liew reminded resort owners along the Dalit Beach to put up signs in multiple languages to warn guests of dangerous rip currents, especially since several drowning cases have occurred along this beach over the years. The minister was quoted by Free Malaysia Today as saying,
“I believe resort and hotel owners along this stretch are knowledgeable and aware of the possible rip current risks at their beachfront and would also have standard operating procedures in place.”
Our condolences go out to the friends and family of the victim and hope that the authorities take action to ensure that such tragedies do not happen again.
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