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Norwegian man, 77, drowns at Khaolak

Norwegian man, 77, drowns at Khaolak

PHUKET: A 77-year-old Norwegian tourist has died after being pulled from the water unconscious at Nang Thong Beach near Khaolak, north of Phuket, yesterday (Jan 8).

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By Eakkapop Thongtub

Wednesday 9 January 2019, 08:00PM


Police continue with their inquiries into Mr Harlem’s death at Takua Pa Hospital. Photo: Khaolak Tourist Police

Police continue with their inquiries into Mr Harlem’s death at Takua Pa Hospital. Photo: Khaolak Tourist Police

The Andaman Hub Medical Center was notified the incident at 4pm and responded by sending an emergency team, police noted in their report.

Khaolak Police identified the man as Knut Olstein Harlem, 77, from Oslo.

Mr Harlem and his wife had checked in at a resort at the beach for long stay, from Jan 2 to Jan 31, police noted.

According to police, Mr Harlem told his wife at 3pm that he was going for a swim in the hotel pool in preparation for the couple’s trip to the Similan Islands the next day.

However, Mr Harlem, who was known to be suffering from Parkinson's disease* and a heart condition, went to the beach, not the pool, police reported.

Another hotel guest soon found Mr Harlem lying face down in the water at the beach, and called for hotel staff to help.

Mr Harlem was pulled from the water, but was unconscious and unresponsive.

Attempts by people at the scene and the rescue team from the Andaman Hub Medical Center that arrived soon after all failed to revive him, police noted.

Mr Harlem’s body was taken to Takua Pa Hospital, where doctors registered the cause of death as drowning.

Police noted in their report that the Norwegian embassy in Bangkok had been notified of the incident.


* The family later corrected the report. Mr Harlem had Parkinson's disease, not "ailing memory issues" as described to The Phuket News in the initial report. The error is regretted.

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