THE TOURIST who drowned at Karon has been identified as a Chinese, Qi Chunhua, 43. His body is at Patong Hospital.
It was feared to be the second tourist death from drowning along Phuket's west coast beaches in two days.
The man and two female companions were swimming in a red flag area outside the lifeguard patrolled zone when the three of them got into difficulties about 2.30pm, according to Utane Singsom, the leader of the lifeguards at Karon beach.
''We rescued all three of them but the man did not survive,'' Khun Utane said. ''He died at Patong Hospital, we were told.''
The surf was particularly rough today, according to lifeguards.
Earlier in the day another tourist, a Chinese man, suffered a dislocated neck at Karon when he was hit from behind by a dumper. and driven into the sand.
The three people disappeared into the surf opposite the sports stadium in Karon.
Lifeguards say it's difficult to control large numbers of tourists who sometimes insist on swimming despite the dangers.
A Korean man, Seo Seungin, 45, disappeared at Kata Noi beach yesterday and is feared drowned. Searchers have yet to locate his body.