Another Pattaya Elephant Dies Through Electrocution

Another Pattaya Elephant Dies Through Electrocution

Another elephant is electrocuted in an elephant encampment on its way for a monthly checkup in Sattahip.

Pattaya 24th January 2010[PDN] This following incident of yet another electrocution of an elephant was reported yesterday, 23rd January at 5.30pm to Police Lieutenant Arnon Inphorng , (NaJomtien Police Investigator)
Mr. Uay Yuirum [61], stated that on the day in question, as he was riding his elephant Saeng-jun [50] in the rain to the Nern NaJomtien Elephant Camp in Sattahip, for her monthly check at the back of the elephant camp, he felt a surge of electricity through his leg and was thrown of his elephant onto a grass verge at the side of the road. At the same time as he was thrown, he felt his elephant shudder before she fell by the side of a high voltage electricity post.
By: Pattaya Daily News
Mr. Yuirum, believes the elephants death was caused by an electrical fault which has left him and his family in a debt of 700,000 baht. Mr. Yuirum went on to say he had a loan of 800,000 baht to purchase the elephant as a means of earning a wage by hiring out the elephants services at 3% interest which leaves 700,000 remaining to repay. Now, because of the death of his elephant, he is unable to earn any money with which to live and repay the debt. He requires the institution to respond to the death of the elephant. Read more>>

The reporters, on receiving the information, rushed to the scene to find Saeng-jun lying dead with her head close to the high voltage post. The Provincial Electricity Authority official arrived to cut the electricity current to enable an examination of both the elephant and the surrounding area. Approximately 3 metres from the post from where the elephant lay, a ground stick was discovered where the elephant had stood before being dying. Apparently, no fault was discovered, leaving the Mahouts in the camp and Mr. Yuirum very upset as they believed the death of the elephant was caused by electrocution.
Mr. Yuirum insisted that he felt the surge of electricity before being thrown and believes he is lucky to be alive. There have been several similar cases at the same point on previous occasions. An example was an elephant named Wongngern with her child Oy who had passed this point whilst raining which had caused a shorting of the electric frightening the elephants into running away causing the mahout to fall breaking his leg. Fortunately they survived.
After similar incidents repeatedly occurring, it was reported to the camp owner but it was never resolved until it has now resulted in a death. Mr. Yuirum said that if the problem is not resolved, then in the future the next incident could involve a fatality of another elephant or even a tourist.
Mrs. Phan Yuirum [38] claimed that the loss of their elephant needed resolving as her family had loaned the money to buy the elephant to earn money by hiring it out and now have no idea how they will survive or repay it. She does not believe this case to be an accident and begs the Electricity Authorities to look into the case and compensate them for the loss. She continued to say they should return when it is raining to find the real problem.
Is this another sign of negligence?
Follow up of Electrocuted Elephant

Following this mornings report on the 50 year old elephant believed to have been electrocuted on the 23rd January 2010.

Pattaya 24th January 2010 [PDN] In the case of the Saeng-jun  the elephant that died yesterday, Mr. Uay Yuirum [61] and his wife Mrs. Phan Yuirum [38] along with a group of mahouts from the Na Jomtien Elephant Camp in Na Jomtien Sattahip, went to meet with Police Lieutenant Arnon Inphorng (Na Jomtien Police Investigator) again, after yesterday’s plea failed to provide any results.

They tried to confirm that the cause of death was due to electrocution and that the cause was the ground stick and sling that connected to the electricity post. Mr Yuirum is still insisting that he felt the electrical current through his leg before being thrown off the elephants back.  He informed the investigating officer that the elephant did not have any symptoms regarding sickness as she had her health check only ten minutes prior to her death. The officer has noted the details and completed the report, because other mahouts came forward to report of other similar incidents, leaving elephants frightened, running wild and injuring mahouts.

The least the dead elephants owners can hope for, is compensation of 700.000 baht which will pay off the loan for the purchase of the elephant.  Pol. Lt. Inphorng stated that he had co-operated with the Provincial Electricity Authority and the official had checked the scene, but failed to find any fault. It is possible the examination was not accurate as it was not raining at the time. The officials will have to re-examine the post again and if it discovered there is a fault, the institute will have to find a way to agree with the injured party. If they are not able to come to a decision, then it will be up to the court to decide.

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