Two women drown at hotel pool

5th and 6th drowning victims in CNMI this year
Two Korean women drowned in the swimming pool of the Pacific Islands Club in San Antonio early yesterday morning.

Police spokesman Jason Tarkong said it is too early to tell if alcohol was a factor in the incident since the investigation is ongoing.

Tarkong confirmed, however, that the pool was already closed when the incident happened.

PIC management has yet to reply to Saipan Tribune’s request for comment as of press time yesterday.

Tarkong said that police and medics responded to PIC at 2am after receiving a call about the drowning incident.

Tarkong said a security guard discovered one victim floating motionless facedown on the pool surface, while the other was found motionless at the bottom of the pool.

The victims, ages 26 and 27, were rushed to the Commonwealth Health Center where a doctor pronounced one dead at 2:43am and the other at 3:18am.

Tarkong said the security guard reported the incident to the security office and jumped into the pool in an attempt to rescue the victims. Other hotel employees responded and helped recover the motionless victims from the pool.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation was applied on the victims before they were taken to CHC.

“The release of the names of drowning victims is withheld pending notification of next of kin. This case is under investigation and is classified as a drowning incident,” Tarkong said.

It is the second drowning incident at PIC pools since April. The two women are also the fifth and sixth drowning victims in the CNMI this year. All incidents happened on Saipan.

On May 21, a search and rescue team recovered the body of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer who was reported missing the night before after spear fishing with two friends at Obyan Beach. Rescuers spotted the victim’s body floating approximately 200 yards outside the reef of Coral Ocean Point.

On April 23, a 4-year-old girl passed away at CHC’s Intensive Care Unit where she was admitted after a near-drowning at PIC’s pool two days before.

On April 16, a Chinese female tourist drowned at Managaha Island as she and her companions were exiting the water to head back to shore.

On March 6, a 76-year-old Japanese male tourist drowned while swimming with three friends at a beach near Hyatt Regency Saipan and Fiesta Resort and Spa Saipan. A strong current reportedly pulled the victim away from the sandbar located in front of Hyatt.

By Ferdie de la Torre

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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