Trampled by elephant: Spanish tourist dies while trying to take photos in South Africa

A Spanish tourist was crushed to death by an elephant while trying to photograph an elephant in South Africa. He is 43 years old.

A Spanish tourist was trampled to death by an elephant after he got out of his car to take photos in a South African park near Johannesburg, authorities said on Tuesday.

The 43-year-old man was attacked on Sunday morning in Bilanesberg National Park, which is very busy because its roughly 50,000 hectares of wildlife are located 200 km from the South African economic capital, park officials said.

Police said the victim, his fiancee and two women were driving their own car in the reserve when they spotted three elephants and three baby elephants.

Preliminary evidence suggests that the man stopped the vehicle, got out and approached the elephants to photograph them“said Sabata Mokwabone, the police spokesperson.”The elephants would have attacked and killed him“.

“They protect their young”

Peter Nel, conservation manager for the North West Provincial Parks and Tourism Authority, said the herd’s mother “freaked out” when she saw the man approaching. He added that it was “normal” for elephants to protect their young.

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Many tourists are unaware of the dangers and don’t realize how dangerous these animals are“, he lamented.

Police, who launched an investigation, said the other passengers in the car, who are from Johannesburg, were not injured.

Elephant attacks are not uncommon in the region.

In 2021, a suspected poacher was killed by elephants in South Africa’s famous Kruger National Park.

Last year, 50 people were killed and 85 injured by wild animals, mainly elephants, in neighboring Zimbabwe.

Pilanesberg and other South African parks ask visitors roaming the reserves to keep their windows down and not get out of their vehicles.

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