On a day trip to the islands with six Russian tourists on board, an excursion boat sunk in Phuket off Hay Island.

An excursion boat carrying six Russian tourists on a day trip to Coral Island (Ko Khei) has sunk off Phuket, the Phuket Maritime Authority said. The boat, named Martini, sank near Nam Bo Bay on the western side of Hay Island at 3.50 pm3.50 pm. No one was injured.

The excursion tourist boat with six Russian tourists and three crew members on board departed from Chalong Bay Marina pier at 9:40 am; planning stops at Maiton and Racha islands, Phuket Maritime Authority chief Natchapong Pranit said.

There were nine people on board: six Russians, including four boys aged 4, 9 and 14, as well as the boat’s owner and operator Chakri Kaenkhong, 31, and two crew members – Amarin Danadi, 17, and Phatttharapon Kotalin, 44.

The main cause of the boat’s sinking was water entering the engine room due to a leaking water pipe. Despite the crew’s efforts, water was coming in faster than the crew could pump out, causing the boat to sink, Chakri explained.

Fortunately, the weather remained normal at the time of the incident, and the wind and waves were calm, the boat captain said.

The nearby vessel Panwa Princess assisted in rescuing the passengers and crew of the boat. Those rescued were safely transported to the pier at the Cape Panwa Hotel in Wichita, where they were treated. The Russian tourists were later taken to hotels in Karon where they were staying.

All passengers and crew members emerged from the incident unharmed, and no oil spillage was detected in the area where the boat sank,” Phuket marine chief Natchapong said.

A boat carrying six Russians sank in Phuket.

The boat’s registration had not expired, and the boatmaster’s certificate was valid,” Natchapong confirmed. However, the boat lacked an engine operator’s licence. It was also found that the boat was being misused, which violated the conditions specified in the licence,” Natchapong added.

The Phuket Maritime Authority “will take all necessary measures to address these violations,” Natchapong said, adding that until the wreck is raised, light buoys will be placed in the water to mark the location of the sinking.

Authorities assure the public that information on the progress of the investigation will be promptly communicated as the situation develops,” an official statement on the maritime incident involving foreign tourists said.

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