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Chilean cyclist on world tour killed by pickup truck in Korat

Legacy Phuket Gazette




– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Chilean cyclist on world tour killed by pickup truck in Korat
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: A Chilean man has become the latest intercontinental cyclist to lose his life on Thai streets, on the final leg of a five-year, round-the-world cycling journey that was to finish in November.

Two years ago, two world-famous British cyclists died after being struck by a pickup truck in Thailand.

The latest victim, Juan Frangisgo, 48, was killed at about 2.30pm on Saturday while cycling his rickshaw on Mittraphap Road (“Friendship Road”) in Nakhon Ratchasima, also known in Thailand as Korat.

The accident injured his two passengers – his 39-year-old Singaporean wife and their 14-month-old son. They are receiving treatment at Buayai Hospital.

Lt Bantoon Sri-tiang, the on-duty officer at Bua Lai Police Station, said that a pickup smashed into the rickshaw, instantly killing Frangisgo, then lost control and overturned.

The pickup driver, Tiwarat Chaipidej, 64, survived the crash unscathed but remained at the scene.

He admitted he was at fault and said he was ready to take responsibility for the accident.

He said he did not see the rickshaw travelling along the roadside and ended up clipping it with his vehicle.

Police said they have charged Tiwarat with reckless driving causing death and injuries.

Frangisgo began his journey in November 2010 on a cycling trip that would take him 250,000 kilometers across five continents with the goal of reaching Australia in November.

Not only was his lifelong ambition snuffed out on the last leg of his grand tour, the lives of his wife and son were also turned upside down.

His wife appeared distraught and declined to testify to police, saying she would provide |information after she holds a proper funeral |for her deceased husband.

The Singaporean said she had planned to fulfill one of her late husband’s last wishes – to have his funeral held at Wat Pa Thamma Utthayan School in Khon Kaen.

“We stayed at the temple for about a week before we moved on to Nakhon Ratchasima. He was so impressed with the temple’s atmosphere that he told me that if he died, to conduct religious rituals for his funeral there,” she said.

She said she would talk to the temple’s abbot to find out how to schedule the ceremony.

Pichet Dechakhamphu from the Nakhon Ratchasima Tourism Office and police visited Frangisgo’s family at the hospital yesterday.

The officials proffered Bt300,000 compensation and promised to help pay up to Bt100,000 of the medical bill for the wife, who sustained a broken |leg in the accident, and the boy, who was only slightly hurt.

— Phuket Gazette Editors


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