I'm sorry to report that a tourist drown today at Contoy. I was there with Captain Tony; the man who died was with a different Isla Mujeres outfit (they have a lime green boat, but I don't know the name). We believe the man likely had a heart attack, but as of right now, I don't think anyone really knows. He was aparently snorkeling alone. His wife became concerned when he didn't return from the water, but it was likely presumed for at least a while that he'd probably gone off to the restrooms or something. I understand from other members of their group that the couple was French Canadian, but don't know the hometown or age of the man who died. He was reportedly an adequate swimmer. Those familar with the snorkeling area at Contoy know that it's shallow, calm, and about the "safest" snorkeling area you'd find anywhere. People in both groups were permitted to use their own discretion in deciding whether or not to wear a life vest, but in light of what happened today, I would expect that will change.
It was a relatively quiet day, but I don't really have any basis for comparison. Captain Tony had about a dozen people (in two boats), and the other operator had maybe the same. There were no groups there from Cancun today. The water (at least at Contoy itself) was clear and placid. there's no undertow, and there's nothing that seems at all dangerous about the snorkel site (a great deal of it is less than six feet deep). The only explanation that makes sense to anyone is that the man had a heart attack or something like it. It goes without saying that everyone there was saddened and somewhat shaken by the sad incident. It was not, in my opinion, due to anyone's negligence. While it's uncertain that a swimming companion would have been able to prevent the death, we'll never know. Though I never met or knew the man who died today, I 'm trying to take some comfort in my belief he died doing something that brought him great pleasure in a place of extraordinary beauty. And though I do not know her personally, my thoughts and prayers are with his wife tonight.