Horrifying dash-cam footage captures the moment a driver smashed in an ELEPHANT – which survived virtually unscathed.
Utai Bitdtakreu, 32, had been driving home from work on Sunday evening with his wife in the car in Nakhon Ratchasima.
But as he went round a small bend on a dark section of mountain road, a wild elephant stepped out into the path of the vehicle.
Utai hit the brakes as he daughter screamed with fright, but there the black Isuzu pick-up truck ploughed into the creature.
Incredibly, the elephant SURVIVED and the driver and his passenger crawled out of the wreckage unhurt after the accident at 7.30pm in the Khao Yai National Park.
Utai, a forestry worker, said: ‘’We were a little bit shaken up by the accident but our first thoughts were for the elephant.
‘’There are a lot of elephants that cross the road and I’m so sorry I did not see this one in time. It just ran across the road. It might have thought that it could get across in time.’’
Rescue workers arrived and began looking for the elephant which they believed might have been injured in the crash but they were unable to trace it.
However, Utain returned early the next morning (Mon) and recorded three elephants crossing the road and he believes the one at the back of the line is the beast he hit. It appeared to have an injured hind left leg.
He said: ‘’It’s a big relief knowing that the elephant is alive and walking around.”
National Park boss Kanchit Sareenpuanron said that workers had been sent to find the elephant and give it treatment for its leg.
He said: ‘’We received the call at 7.30pm and arrived at the scene quickly to give help. Staff have been ordered to follow that elephant which has been injured and administer treatment.’’
The sprawling Khao Yai National Park covers some 1250 square miles across several neighbouring provinces in central Thailand.
It is home to thousands of wild elephants and diverse wildlife and stunning waterfalls. The area is popular with locals and tourists but there are often cases of elephants having conflicts with cars.