British Man Died In Vang Vieng

Even before I even finish reading the article of below, I immediately assume that alcohol and drugs are involved.  As I commended on my previous blogs, Vang Vieng is best known throughout backpacker communities for the cheap drugs.  I am surprised that there aren’t as many death as reported it.  Not too many cities in Southeast Asian countries that you can order your drugs directly from restaurant menu.  Alcohol, drugs, hot sun and water just doesn’t mix well together.  It is only going to get worse if the government doesn’t step in and clean up the mess.

Bournemouth man died after river ‘tubing’ in Laos

A Dorset man drowned after “tubing” down a river during an adventure holiday in south-east Asia, an inquest has heard.

Benjamin Light, 23, of Bournemouth, was on holiday in Laos when he took part in the extreme sport on 13 April at Phoudindaeng Village near Vang Vieng.

The court heard the trip on a tube down the river also involved several stops to drink shots of alcohol.

The coroner sitting in Southampton recorded a verdict of accidental death.

Gordon Denson, deputy coroner said that Mr Light’s mother, Andrea Lowehry, had been in contact with a professional lifeguard who had been on duty on the river bank the day her son died.

He had described how all the participants of the activity had been given alcohol during stops on their way down the river.

‘Eyes rolled back’

Mr Light then swung on a rope swing and jumped into the river.

“He was immersed for some time then crawled back on to the riverside,” Mr Denson told the inquest.

“He then stood up, said ‘excuse me’ and fell backwards.

“His eyes rolled back and, when attempts were made to resuscitate him, a little bit of water came out of his mouth and at that point he passed away.”

Mr Light’s embalmed body was repatriated to the UK. where a post mortem-examination revealed no clear cause of death, although there were signs of cardio-respiratory failure caused by drowning.

Mr Denson said: “Benjamin Light was on a holiday to Laos to experience what a lot of people want to do, an adventure holiday.

“He was riding down on a tube in the river, but the difference in this was that during the course of his experience he obviously consumed alcohol and then swung across the river on a rope.

“He went into the river and I can only surmise that while immersed in the water he took on board a lot of water into his body, which ultimately caused the cardio-respiratory failure.”

He added: “I wish to pass on my own personal condolences to the family.

“It’s always difficult when you lose a family member, especially when one is so young as Benjamin who was 23 years of age.”


5 thoughts on “British Man Died In Vang Vieng

  1. Jeffrey

    I felt the same way when I read the headline. On my last two trips to Laos I have seen more and more of these “backpacker” types who are traveling to Vang Vieng to party. I am sorry to read when anyone dies while on holiday. Also, “tubing” is not something easy to do, especially on some of the wilder wildcat rapids.

    1. seeharhed Post author

      Sabaidee Jeffrey, I hope things are going well for you in Korea or in Laos now? Vang Vieng is like some town in Florida during spring break. Sad to hear about people dies while vacation in Laos.

  2. unbjames

    Sad to hear about this, but I can’t say I’m surprised … those rope swings are so dangerous, especially at the end of the dry season, when the river is so shallow!

    1. seeharhed Post author

      Thanks for stopping by… If you think the rope swings are dangerous, you have to see the water slide.. There are no rules and regulations on building those slides. I’m sure most of the death in Vung Vieng are alcohol and drug related.


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