NEWS: Singaporean Woman Dies Whilst Scuba Diving

The body of Ms Neo Qiu Ping Vera was found on Monday (April 25, 2016) after she failed to return from diving in the waters of Gili Lawa (marked on the map) on Sunday.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM GOOGLE MAPS

According to Indonesian media, Ms Neo had been on a diving trip with five other Singaporeans and five Indonesians, as well as local tour guide Putu Sudiartana. They had set out on Saturday on a cruise boat run by tour company Komodo Trails to the dive site.

After diving on Sunday, most of the group returned to the boat at about 5pm, but Ms Neo did not resurface. The group searched for Ms Neo for about an hour. The boat captain then called the authorities to report a missing passenger.As nightfall was approaching, an eight-man search operation started only the next day at 6am.

Ms Neo, whose occupation is not known, became a qualified autonomous diver with Scuba Schools International in October 2014, having logged seven or more dives, and earned her Advanced Adventurer certification in December that year after going on at least 18 dives.

A Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman said they are in touch with Ms Neo’s family and have deployed an officer to Labuan Bajo to stay in touch with the local authorities and help other Singaporeans who are there. The place where Ms Neo went diving is known to be dangerous due to strong currents. Last October, China tourist Tuo Guangbin also drowned while diving there.