Missing French tourist found dead off Tioman Island

Missing French tourist found dead off Tioman Island
File photo of people snorkelling.

KUANTAN: French tourist Jerome Philippe Laurent was found dead after he went missing in waters perfect for snorkelling in Pulau Tioman.

According to experts, there were no big waves at the time the 24-year-old engineer went snorkelling.

Laurent's body was found floating some 300m away from where he had gone snorkelling near the Berjaya Tioman Resort at about 3pm on Tuesday.

Rompin OCPD Deputy Supt Johari Jahaya said search and rescue personnel found the body at 2.15pm yesterday.

"The remains are being sent to the Kuantan hospital for post-mortem," he said in a text message.

The website L'Alsace.fr reported the French Embassy in Malaysia as saying that the young man's family had been informed of the death.

Diving instructor and Ocean Elements Sdn Bhd owner Mohd Halimi Abdullah said monitoring for snorkelling activities was less, compared to diving.

"Snorkelling is cheap and more people take part in it compared to diving.

"In a dive group of five, there is usually one guide, and the same number for a group of 20 snorkellers or more," he said.

Snorkellers, said Mohd Halimi, could go out on their own whereas diving centres would know about a dive because equipment had to be rented.

He said sometimes, the current could be too strong or the visibility was not good enough at certain spots.

Tioman dive operator Ahmad Saifuddin Ahmad Shapawi said there were no big waves off Tioman and the conditions for snorkelling and diving were presently good.

"But when it comes to safety, divers and snorkellers have to follow rules," he pointed out.

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