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Lightning strike kills man, oxen in Kampong Speu

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A man and four oxen were killed by lightning as they returned from a rice field to their home in Baset district’s Svay Rompear commune in Kampong Speu on Sunday. Supplied

Lightning strike kills man, oxen in Kampong Speu

A man and four oxen were killed by lightning as they returned from a rice field to their home in Baset district’s Svay Rompear commune in Kampong Speu on Sunday.

Commune police chief Em Sarorn identified the victim as 69-year-old Mean Chrun.

Before the incident, Chrun and his two grandsons travelled by oxcart to the rice fields, about 700m from their home, to plough the land. His grandsons returned home in the afternoon with a bucket of snails they picked at the field for their parents to cook for dinner, Sarorn said.

“At 5:30 pm, while it was raining, the victim was riding the oxcart back home, but was struck and killed by lightning. His four oxen also died.”

Chrun’s family prepared a funeral for the victim on Monday. They sold the four oxen for three million riel to help pay for the preparations, Sarorn said.

National Committee for Disaster Management spokesman Keo Vy told The Post on Monday that up to June 22, lightning strikes had killed 28 people, injured 20, and killed 45 cattle in the Kingdom.

“Compared to last year, deaths and injuries caused by lightning strikes have fallen noticeably. Deaths decreased by 34 and injuries fell by 40.”

According to a 2019 National Committee for Disaster Management report, lightning strikes killed 62 people, injured 60 and killed 80 cattle during the first six months of 2019.

Vy urged farmers to be more cautious during rain and strong winds, especially those who live near the Dangrek mountain range and Phnom Kravanh district in Pursat province.

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