Man feared drowned

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 24 October, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 24 October, 2009, 12:00am

A 59-year-old former University of Hong Kong lecturer is missing, feared drowned, after he ignored the red flags and big waves at Shek O Beach yesterday and went swimming. Rescuers were still searching for Chan Siu-chow last night.

A female friend of Chan raised the alarm at about 12.45pm when he failed to return to the beach. He was last seen at about 11am swimming near one of the floating platforms.

Fire Services Department divers searched the water, while firemen and police searched the shoreline.

Chan's son said his father had returned from Canada to teach at the University of Hong Kong before retiring three years ago.

A university spokeswoman said Chan joined the department of statistics and actuarial science in 1998 and was a senior teaching consultant when he left in 2006.

The Leisure and Cultural Services Department said the red flag was hoisted at Shek O Beach at 9am yesterday because of big waves, and frequent announcements were broadcast to warn beachgoers not to enter the water. It said 17 lifeguards were on duty and staffing was sufficient.