Villagers had a mad rush to scavenge free meat after a herd of 21 buffalos were killed by a moving train.
Twenty-one creatures died instantly when a diesel passenger train travelling at around 60mph ploughed into the animals which had wondered onto the tracks on Wednesday evening at 10pm.
The emergency services arrives and moved the animal carcasses onto adjacent banks next to the line in rural province Nakhon Sawan.
Engineers repaired the tracks a few hours later but by morning police officers who arrived at the scene to investigate were horrified to see several of the bodies had been butchered.
Police said that locals had heard about the incident and arrived at sun rise – setting to work on the beef carcasses for free meat to cook for the next week.
Police Colonel Vichai Yuttachasornphong from the Nong Pling distraict station said that officers investigating the accident had been unable to trace the buffalos’ owner.
He said: ‘’It seems that villagers heard the news and came here to gather the meat to take back home to cook.”
Major General Wichaiyut Kesornsi said the owner of one farm had been contacted but he denied the animals belonged to him.
He said that the owner of the buffalo – each worth around 50,000 baht – now faced charges for damage to the train and tracks caused by letting his animals escape.
Maj Gen Kesornsi added: ‘’We will continue our investigation to find the owner.’’