Truck carrying elephant overturns in northern Thailand


The 50 year old male elephant who was badly injured in a road accident in Chiang Mai yesterday finally made it to the elephant hospital in Lampang province, 20 hours later.

At around 9am yesterday, the truck transporting “Pooh Kham” from Mae Chaem to an elephant camp in Mae Wang overturned on the windy roads.

At first, Pooh Kham couldn’t get up and was crying in pain. During the long wait for the elephant ambulance, Pooh Kham stood up but still couldn’t put any weight on his right hind leg.

Luckily, a team of staff from Lampang Elephant Hospital were already in the area and swiftly provided first aid. However, Pooh Kham had to wait eight hours for the ambulance, which arrived at about 5pm with painkillers and blood thinners.

Thai Elephant Alliance said that getting Pooh Kham into the ambulance was quite a difficult task because of his injuries and took several hours. Pooh Kham travelled in the ambulance nonstop for more than eight hours, finally arriving at Lampang Elephant Hospital early this morning.

A team of veterinarians were ready to inspect Pooh Kham’s injuries when he arrived. An X-ray revealed that the elephant’s hip and right hind leg were “seriously injured.”

Thai Elephant Alliance said there is some luck in Pooh Kham’s misfortune because elephants are more likely to recover from hind leg injuries than front leg injuries due to elephants carrying two-thirds of their body weight on their front legs.

The team of veterinarians are in the process of creating a detailed treatment plan for Pooh Kham, who will stay at the hospital until he has made a full recovery.

Thai Elephant Alliance thanked mahouts, villagers, community leaders, the mayor of Mae Suek subdistrict and monks from Huai Phak Kut Temple for sticking with Pooh Kham all day and helping him board the ambulance.

The alliance also thanked the elephant ambulance drivers who drove for 20 hours in total with no break to get Pooh Kham to safety. The alliance also thanked the kind members of the public who donated to the alliance to help cover the costs of the whole rescue mission.


A rescue mission has been launched for a badly injured elephant after the truck transporting it overturned in Chiang Mai province, northern Thailand, this morning. The elephant could not get up due to its injuries.

At 10.23am today, Thai Elephant Alliance posted a picture of the injured elephant, named ‘Pooh Kham’ on its Facebook page.

Thai Elephant Alliance said they received a report requesting an elephant ambulance to Mae Chaem district after a truck carrying an elephant had overturned. The elephant “could barely move,” said the Facebook post.

Luckily, a veterinarian and a team of assistants from the Elephant Hospital in Lampang province were in the area performing other duties, so they rushed to the scene to inspect Pooh Kham’s injuries and provide first aid.

Thai Elephant Alliance has arranged for an elephant ambulance to pick up Pooh Kham. The ambulance is on its way, but the alliance said it will take six to seven hours for it to arrive. The ambulance will bring medication, saline solution, and emergency tools provided by the Centre of Elephant and Wildlife Health at Chiang Mai University.

SOURCE: Thai Elephant Alliance

Thailand News


Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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