Elephant kills British tourist in Thailand

Victim's daughter denies reports that her father teased the animal with bananas.

Elephant kills UK tourist,
Mahouts ride their elephants during a protest against a government plan, at Ayutthaya Elephant Camp October 24, 2013. Reuters

A British tourist has been killed by an elephant while on a trek in Thailand.

Gareth Crowe, a 36-year-old man from Scotland, was doing an elephant trek with family when the mishap occurred.

The elephant became agitated when its handler stopped the ride in a forest patch to take photographs, Bangkok Post said.

The jumbo turned on the mahout, swatting him down and goring him. It then shook the tourists, Crowe and his 16-year-old daughter, to the ground and attacked them.

The pachyderm trampled on the man and then gored him with its tusk, killing him on the spot. The daughter sustained minor injuries and was under treatment.

The 13-year-old elephant, called Golf, then ran off into the forest, reports said.

UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office said in a statement: "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."

Animal rights groups Thailand's popular ride elephants are cruelly abused. They say tourists are unaware of the abuses, and the potential dangers they are exposing themselves to.

Crowe's daughter, who is in hospital, denied reports that her father had teased the animal with bananas.

"He was not teasing the elephant as I was his 16 year old daughter who is lying in hospital and I was on it," she said.

This article was first published on February 2, 2016