A Chinese tourist was hacked to death by a speedboat’s propellers after getting trapped under the boat while swimming.

Lee Yuheng, 18, had been with a group of 34 Chinese holidaymakers on a trip from Phuket to Koh Phi Phi when the boat stopped for them to swim and snorkel in the sea.

After climbing down the stern boarding ladder at the back of the vessel, it is believed that heavy waves pushed him into under the outboard motors, according to Daily News.

The speedboat that the Chinese tourist was on before getting caught in propellers
The speedboat that the Chinese tourist was on before getting caught in propellers

The boat’s crew are then said to have revved the engine and tried to reverse the boat, but the propellers smashed into his arms and legs.

The teenager was rushed to hospital where surgeons battled to stop the blood loss but later died from his injuries.

Police have spoken to the staff and the tour guide operator about the accident.

It comes after three tourists were killed when a speedboat they were travelling in capsized off Koh Samui.

Britons Monica Cozma, 28, and Jason Parnell, 46, and a German woman were killed after the boar flipped over in rough seas.


It’s not unusual for speedboats to stop in the sea for tourists to climb into water and go snorkeling and swimming.

I’ve been there myself – plunging into a beauty spot packed with four and five boats and almost a hundred tourist in the sea. It was bad enough in January.

But June, July and August is the height of rainy season in Thailand, and the sea is a lot choppier. The tours will carry on, but the captains have to be much more careful.

With a teenager trapped under the boat, what possessed the crew to rev the engines and try and reverse is beyond me. It’s a crazy thing to do. 

The crew should have dived into the water and swam under the boat to drag the poor boy out.

Unfortunately most accidents that happen in Thailand get swept under the carpet and it’s business as usual. So new rules and regulations are hardly ever introduced. 

The tour guide industry that runs day trips on speedboats is in urgent need of much more strict regulation. Leaving it to the common sense of captains and tour guides is all well and good, unless, as is shown in this instance, they don’t actually have any common sense.

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