Driver hits wild gaur in northeast Thailand, both injured

Photo of the damage by Wang Nam Khiao District Tourism Promotion Club.

A driver hit a wild gaur in Thailand’s northeast province of Nakhon Ratchasima last night, injuring both himself and the gaur. The driver hit the gaur on Highway 3052 in Wang Nam Khiao district.

The driver said he saw the gaur cross in front of him, too close for him to stop or avoid hitting it. Rescuers arrived on the scene to find the man with minor injuries, with the front of his car badly damaged. The rescuers brought the driver to a hospital.

The gaur was believed to also have been injured, but it was still able to run away into the forest, Bangkok Post reported.

Today, the head of the Khao Phaeng Ma Non-Hunting Area lead a team of rangers to find the gaur and treat its injuries. The gaur’s injuries were thought to be minor, since there were no blood stains and the tracks it left showed no signs of a broken limb.

According to police, the area of the accident had two traffic lanes, and no lights.

Gaurs, also known as Indian bison, are indigenous to Asia and Southeast Asia. The species has been listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List since 1986. The gaur population has dwindled down to a couple hundred in Thailand.

There have been a few tragic incidents involving gaurs in the kingdom. Last year, a forest ranger was killed and another ranger sustained injuries after they were attacked by a gaur. The two rangers had been on patrol in the Khao Yai National Park at the time of the attack. There were four other rangers who had been conducting patrols with them.

When they have limited interactions with humans, the animal tends to be timid, but when frightened they will crash through the forest. In some Southeast Asian countries, locals say that gaurs can be noted for their aggressive behaviour. The animal has few natural enemies.

After the recent incident in Nakhon Ratchasima, the driver and the gaur will both hopefully recover soon.

Northern Thailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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