Nida Patcharaweeraphong dead at 37 – Thai actress dies after falling from speedboat on restaurant trip with pals

THAI actress Nida Patcharaweeraphong has died aged 37 after falling from a speedboat during a restaurant trip with pals.

Nida was heading towards a restaurant with friends when she fell into Chao Phraya river in Bangkok on February 24.

She was reportedly seated on the back end of the boat but how she fell remains unclear.

The speedboat searched for Nida for 20 minutes after her pals noticed she was missing but later decided to call local authorities, who sent a team of 30 divers to search the area.

Nida's brother Dais Dejjab joined the search and rescue mission and reportedly spotted "something floating" in the water, which was later identified to be the Thai actress.

He said: "The pain everyone in the family is going through is unbearable. We loved our sister so much and she brought us so much happiness.

"I would like to thank everyone for their efforts. I came to take her back home now."

Nida's distraught mother Panida Siriyuthyothin said her daughter was a good swimmer and couldn't believe what had happened.

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She said: "Before that night she went missing I suddenly thought about her. I wanted to call her. When I heard the news, I could not believe it. I still hoped it wasn't her."

Doctors who performed an autopsy on Nida confirmed she died from drowning and found a deep gash on her left leg which may have been caused by the boat's propeller.

Senior police chief at Nonthaburi station Major General Paisarn Wongwatcharamongkol said the owner of the speedboat could face charges for allegedly operating the vessel with an expired license.

He told local reporters: "We found that the speed boat had an expired license and the person who was driving it at the time Nida fell also had no license to drive.

"The two may face charges for causing death due to negligence but no formal charges have been filed."

The speedboat's owners Tanupat Lerttaweewit and the driver, who has been identified as "Bert", have been taken in for questioning by police.

Nida's body was returned to her family and funeral arrangements are reportedly underway.

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