A traditional buffalo fighting festival in Northern Vietnam was suspended after a trainer was violently gored by one of his animals. The man later died of his injuries in hospital.
The Do Son festival, held in the port city of Hai Phong, north Vietnam, was suspended Saturday following the first death at the event since the Vietnam War era. Local man Dinh Xuan Huong, 47, had almost a decade of experience at the competition. He purchased the buffalo, marked number 18 in the footage, last year.
The man was gored in the thigh, chest and neck and was unconscious when transported to hospital where he later succumbed from his injuries.
Authorities have accused festival organizers of failing to provide adequate safety measures. They also ordered doping tests to be carried out on all buffaloes at the event to check for performance enhancers and banned substances which may have been used to heighten the animals’ aggression.
The buffalo which killed its owner will likely be put down, authorities said.
The controversial festival was previously banned during the war but resumed almost 27 years ago. The ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will now consult experts and the public to decide whether the festival should be banned permanently, vice minister Trinh Thi Thuy said, according to VnExpress.