Irish tourist dies after leaning out of moving train to take pictures

According to officials, Patrick Ward died after he leaned out of a moving train in Thailand to take pictures.

Following a fall off a moving train on Tuesday, a tourist from Ireland visiting western Thailand passed away.

The man was recognised as 45-year-old Patrick Ward, whose passport indicated that he was born in New Zealand.

Although his present address remained unknown, he arrived in Thailand on a tourist visa on December 26.

The bridge over the River Kwai, which was made famous in the movie about the railway built by slave labour under Japanese WWII occupation, is near Kanchanaburi town, according to the police, who said Ward arrived there on Tuesday with a tour group by rail from the capital, Bangkok.

The group made a quick stop before continuing to Sai Yok waterfall, another well-liked tourist attraction.

According to witnesses, as the train slowed down at a scenic location, Ward unlocked a door in the carriage and fell 7-8 metres (yards) down a slope. 

Emergency services and rescuers arrived at the scene of his collapse quickly. They were unable to get to where he was laying, so they had to construct a pulley system to lower themselves to reach him.

According to Thai authorities, Mr. Ward’s arm and neck were shattered when rescuers found him and he was barely alive.

A police official did not confirm after the incident that Ward was attempting to snap a selfie when the accident happened just before noon, as was reported in Thai media.

Later, they claimed that although Mr. Ward’s body had wounds, none of them suggested foul play.

The New Zealand embassy in Thailand would be contacted, according to police authorities, and custody of the body would be turned over for the funeral.