March 17, 2017

Two Foreign Tourists Drown in Kayangan Lake, Coron, Palawan

Two male tourists from Czechoslovakia drowned while snorkeling at Kayangan Lake in Coron, Palawan. The incident happened on March 13 (Monday). The victims have been identified as Martin Sefcik (28 years old) and Jakub Brazda (25 years old). Both Martin and Jakub are Czech nationals.

According to the Coron police, the two men along with thirteen (13) other Czech companions went island-hopping around 8:30 in the morning of March 13. They reportedly rented a boat by Menard Naval (the boat captain) and Manuel Rendola (the boat man). When they reached Kayangan Lake, the group went snorkeling. In the afternoon, the group went back to the Coron Paradise Hotel where they were staying. That's when they noticed that two of their companions are missing.

The boat captain and the boat man immediately went back to Kayangan Lake to find the missing snorkelers. After more than an hour of failed searching, the men then called for help from the Philippine Coast Guard. Members of the PCG with the assistance of local divers like Arni Pabilonio were able to recover the already lifeless bodies of the divers around 8:30 in the evening. The bodies were recovered from a depth of about twenty-two (22) meters.

The cadavers were brought to the morgue being run by the Coron District Hospital. According to the police, they have already notified the Czech Embassy in Manila about the death of the two Czech tourists.

In light of the event, the municipal government of Coron are planning to impose stricter rules in the activities being done in Kayangan Lake. Local officials learned that the two men who drowned went "free diving". This means that they weren't using breathing apparatus like scuba diving gear when they swam in the water.