An elderly man was trampled to death during a wild elephant attack early yesterday morning while foraging in a forest in tambon Thap Chang in Soi Dao district of Chanthaburi, local officials said.
Khao Soi Dao park officials and rescue workers were alerted to the incident at 1.20am by the victim's son who separated from his father before the attack took place.
Prayoon Phetluechai, 76, was found dead at the scene with multiple injuries to his body. He was sent to Soi Dao Hospital for an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death. Elephant tracks were found in the forest area and it was believed that there were four of them, including a mother and a calf.
According to the initial findings report, the victim and his son went into the forest to forage for food and at some point separated. However, when the son came looking for his father, he found him dead, it said.
It was believed that Prayoon stumbled across a herd of wild elephants also looking for food in the area. The herd might have found him to be a threat and attacked him, park officials said.
Therefore, a rescue team led by park officials took extra precautions when examining the scene.
According to the provincial disaster prevention and mitigation office, the attack was the fourth incident of its kind this month in the province. Last Friday, a local TV reporter was trampled to death by a wild elephant in Khao Kitchakut district.
Over the course of this year, seven people have been killed and one injured in attacks, according to the office. Provincial authorities recently warned that it was mating season and people should call Hotline 1362 when spotting wild elephants.