Missing kayaker Jason Chung Yai-Ho

Missing kayaker Jason Chung Yai-Ho

Police are appealing to paddlers to be prepared before they take to the water.

The plea from Police Scotland came after a major search for a missing kayaker on the west coast.

Two people also died in swollen rivers after recent storms, and officers said people should be aware of the dangers, conscious of the weather conditions and make sure they are fully equipped before getting into the water.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Williams said: “There have been several kayaking incidents in the past few weeks on Scottish waters and sadly this has resulted in deaths.

“We’re urging anybody taking part in outdoor water-based activities to take safety messages seriously and check weather conditions before you set out.

“The weather and water conditions can change really quickly and even the most skilled of kayakers can get into difficulties.

“With many stretches of water located in remote areas, help will often be some time away so it’s important to ensure you have the knowledge and equipment to deal with all eventualities.

“Take responsibility for your own actions, use your commonsense and plan ahead to minimise risks.”

A search for Glasgow man Jason Chung Yai-Ho will continue this weekend after officers failed to find the kayaker.

The 39-year-old failed to return after embarking on a night kayak trip from Arisaig on Wednesday. Police said he was last seen about 4.30pm, with an inflatable, single-person kayak.

A search by police officers and Coastguard crews was launched but was called off at 4pm on Thursday. A Coastguard spokesperson said Coastguard Rescue Teams from Mallaig and Salen carried out searches of the shoreline on Wednesday night and the Mallaig lifeboat searched the coastal area, islands and rocks in the area and the Coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Inverness also combed the area with infrared heat sensitive equipment.

The spokesperson said weather conditions were challenging for the search units with strong winds and wintry squalls and the search was suspended after no trace of the kayaker or his red craft had been found.

The search resumed on Thursday using Coastguard Rescue Teams from Mallaig, Salen and Fort William, the RNLI Lifeboat from Mallaig and the Coastguard rescue helicopter from Stornoway.

Ian Guy, controller at the National Maritime Operations Centre said: “We conducted an extensive search in poor weather and in the dark. We are also making broadcasts to all boats in the area, requesting that they keep a sharp lookout for the kayak and missing person.”

Mr Chung Yai-Ho is described as 5ft 8in (1.73m) tall with short dark hair and beard. He was last seen wearing a black waterproof jacket, black waterproof trousers and a black buoyancy aid.

Police said his car, a red 2003 Toyota Corolla, was found parked nearby and has since been recovered by officers.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Over the weekend there will be continued searches co-ordinated by police based in Fort William.

“Local officers will be supported by specialist search teams and dog units. Further assistance will be provided by HM Coastguard and Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team.”

If anyone has seen Mr Chung Yai-Ho or has any information regarding his current whereabouts or movements prior to when he was last seen on Traigh beach, they are asked to contact police on 101.

Information on inland water safety can be found on the Scottish Water website. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution site has details of coastal safety and general water safety advice can be seen on the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents website.

Some articles the site thinks might be related:

  1. Major search continues for kayaker Alistair Collier, missing after Dorset race
  2. Search continues for three walkers missing in Lowther Hills
  3. Paddler dies as kayak capsizes on lake
  4. Body found in search for missing kayaker Dominic Jackson
  5. Renewed appeal as search for Glen Coe walker Edward Davies continues