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By Theresa Merto

HAGATNA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, Aug. 28) - An 18-year-old
Japanese tourist died yesterday afternoon after she was struck by lightning
while swimming in the waters off Tumon Bay.

The woman was swimming with her father about 150 feet from the
shoreline behind the Hyatt Regency Guam when she was hit, according to Guam
Police Department spokeswoman Sgt. Kim Santos.

"Her father found his daughter floating in the water and
she appeared to be lifeless. There was blood coming out of her mouth and nose
and ears, so he pulled her out of the water," Santos said. "It is
evident that lightning struck her."

At 1:53 p.m. yesterday, the Guam Fire Department responded to a
report of a possible lightning victim at the hotel's beachside, according to GFD
spokeswoman Firefighter Phyllis Blas.

Medic 1 and Advanced Life Support 2 units responded. Blas said a
lifeguard was performing CPR when medics arrived, and that they continued CPR as
the woman was transported to Guam Memorial Hospital.

The tourist was pronounced dead at 2:45 p.m. at the hospital.
Her name was not released pending notification of off-island relatives, Santos

GMH administrator Bill McMillan said the woman was brought to
the emergency room and she suffered a cardiac arrest and third-degree burns.

Maria Cooper-Nurse, Hyatt marketing communications manager, said
that the victim was a guest at the hotel.

Cooper-Nurse said when the thunderstorms began, hotel employees
took precautions and asked guests to get out of the pool, but the victim was
quite a distance away from shore.

National Weather Service meteorologist Mike Middlebrooke said
residents should expect more thunderstorms today and should take precautionary

"The winds will still be light and with the island heating
during the first part of the day, we'll have those buildups again over the
island," Middlebrooke said. "There is a good chance that thunderstorms
will develop again around midday."

August 28, 2003

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