Man Dies Of Altitude Sickness While Climbing Mount Kinabalu With His Wife

Climbers are always advised to prioritise their safety and to prepare thoroughly before climbing the mountain.

Cover image via CNA & Mount Kinabalu (Facebook)

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A 45-year-old man has died of altitude sickness after suffering from symptoms while climbing up Mount Kinabalu yesterday, 25 April

According to New Straits Times, Alexzander Kueh Check Boo and his wife were climbing the mountain and had reached Panalaban, the mid-point rest stop just before the peak, when the incident occurred.

In a statement issued yesterday, Sabah Tourism, Culture, and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew said Kueh's 35-year-old wife, Ng Wee Peo, first complained of a headache and respiratory difficulties at approximately 9pm.

"The Mountain Search and Rescue Team team gave (the wife) oxygen required for first aid," said Liew.

An hour later, the rescue team decided to bring her down the mountain in a stretcher to seek medical attention at a nearby hospital. Kueh followed them down.

Image via CNA

However, Kueh also started to experience breathing difficulties on the way down to Timpohon Gate, the entrance of the climbing trail

"At about 2am, 2km away from Timpohon Gate, the husband experienced difficulty breathing and muscle cramps. He was subsequently carried via stretcher to Timpohon," said Liew, as quoted by CNA.

"Based on the symptoms, altitude mountain sickness (AMS) is believed to be the cause," she added.

Both victims were sent to Ranau Hospital for further treatment.

Kueh, however, was pronounced dead at 4.30am at the hospital

Liew extended her condolences to Kueh's family and added that his wife's condition has stabilised following her recovery from AMS.

The minister has asked Sabah Parks, which falls under her ministry, to assist the deceased's family wherever necessary.

She also advised future climbers to be prepared physically and mentally before attempting to climb Mount Kinabalu.

According to the Mount Kinabalu Information & Booking Centre, climbers are always advised to prioritise their safety, prepare thoroughly, and to know the symptoms of AMS before climbing the mountain.

"Pace your ascend so that your body is able to acclimatise to the high altitude gradually and remember to stay hydrated! Remember, anyone can be affected by AMS," they said.

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