A 10-year-old boy died and a 7-year-old boy was seriously injured on Sunday after a tractor towing a trailer knocked over a stack of speakers onto a crowded dance floor during a party in Banteay Meanchey province, police said Monday.
Hor Samnath, deputy police chief in Mongkol Borei district, said the accident occurred in Ta Lom commune at about 2 p.m. during a party to celebrate the recently completed construction of a shelter for villagers to rest in.
“While the local villagers were dancing, the pile of speakers fell down on them,” Mr. Samnath said.
Sann Pich, 10, and Yuot Chea, 7, were seriously injured when the speakers fell on their heads, and their parents and police immediately brought both boys to the district referral hospital, he said.
“But unfortunately, when we arrived, the hospital’s doctors said that one boy had already died,” he added, referring to Sann Pich.
According to Mr. Samnath, the tractor and trailer had been used to transport the speakers to the party and was later parked behind them.
After the dancing began, the tractor’s driver started to drive away, knocking the trailer into the speakers, he said.
“The pile of speakers fell because a man drove…into them. But he escaped immediately after the accident.”
Commune police chief Chet Chamroeun identified the driver as Mech Mol, 21, who is still at large, and the owner of the speakers as Pel Phai, 57, a local farmer.
“We are looking for the driver,” he said. “All the speakers and the [tractor] were confiscated and are being kept at the district police station.”
Mr. Chamroeun said the families of the victims had not yet filed complaints with police because Sann Pich’s family was busy with his funeral Monday and Mr. Chea’s was still with him at the hospital.
“But the owner of the speakers must be responsible for the compensation,” he added.