An elderly man discovered face down in a hot tub at Spa Castle in Queens died on Sunday evening, though his exact cause of death remains unclear.
84-year-old Hock Ma, of Forest Hills, was found submerged in one of the spa's rooftop hot tubs by another patron, who apparently had just stepped into the water when she "felt something" by her feet. "It was the gentleman. He went under and no one noticed him," witness Jessica Pescatore told NBC New York. "They didn't administer CPR [right away], they ran upstairs to get a booklet on how to actually perform CPR," she added.
Spa staff ultimately failed to resuscitate Ma, and he was pronounced dead at Flushing Hospital Medical Center a short time later. The medical examiner is currently investigating the cause of death, though Ma's son told the Daily News that his father had been in good health prior to the incident.
Inspections by the Health Department have in the past found Spa Castle to be in violation of numerous safety precautions, such as failing to maintain an up-to-date safety plan and falling below the required number of pool supervisors. The department has, however, cleared the facility of each violation.
"Safety precautions are clearly posted in our facilities and the staff in the area is CPR certified," said Spa Castle spokesperson Stephanie Chon. "Our thoughts are with the family at this time."