Scottish tourist ‘killed by elephant’

Gareth Crowe

Image caption

Gareth Crowe is reported to have been thrown by the elephant

A Scottish tourist has reportedly been killed by an elephant while on holiday on Koh Samui island in Thailand.

The man, named locally as Gareth Crowe, was on an elephant trek with his teenage daughter when he was thrown by the animal, according to local press.

The Bangkok Post said the 36-year-old was trampled on and wounded by the elephant’s tusk on Monday afternoon.

The Foreign Office said it was aware of the incident and was offering consular assistance to the man’s family.

A spokesman said: “We are offering support to the family of a British national who has sadly died following an incident in Koh Samui, Thailand, and are making contact with the local authorities to seek further information.”

The man’s daughter is understood to have been treated in hospital.

‘Attacked on ground’

Jonathan Head, the BBC’s South Asia correspondent, told Good Morning Scotland: “From what the police are telling us this elephant was stressed, perhaps it was hot, it may also have been on heat and that’s always a problem with male elephants – it has to be looked at very carefully by their handlers.

“The mahout – the elephant handler – was clearly having some trouble controlling the elephant and they have a sort of iron spike that they use – it looks rather brutal – but they use it to strike the elephant’s head, not usually very hard, but at least to let it know what to do.

“He was struggling a bit with that, so there were indications that things were wrong.

“The mahout appears to have got off the elephant to take photographs of Mr Crowe and his daughter and at that point the elephant lost its temper, it attacked the mahout and threw the two tourists off its back.

“I think they were both injured, it’s quite high up on an elephant – and then it attacked Mr Crowe on the ground, where he was apparently gored and trampled, his daughter is fine, she’s in hospital now, she was slightly injured.”

There are estimated to have been around about a dozen incidents similar to this over the past 15 years.

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Image caption

Elephant treks are offered to tourists in many parts of Thailand



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