Rival Ambulance Crews Brawl in Thailand, Leaving One Dead

An ambulance races into a protest site in Bangkok, Thailand, 14 May 2010. One volunteer rescue worker died when rival ambulance squads brawled on the streets of Bangkok early Monday. EPA/BARBARA WALTON

BANGKOK (DPA) – One volunteer rescue worker died when rival ambulance squads brawled on the streets of Bangkok early Monday, officials said.

The incident started when an ambulance crew belonging to the Pai Rom Sai Foundation accused another from the Por Tek Tung Foundation of encroaching on its territory in responding to a traffic accident.

The Pai Rom Sai crew allegedly attacked the Por Tek Tung Foundation with clubs and handguns leaving one volunteer member dead and two others wounded.

"We don't understand why they would do this," said Chumpol Boonpakdee, assistant director of Por Tek Tung Foundation.

"We had explained to them earlier that we are just volunteers serving society, there is no need for rivalry." 

There are several volunteer rescue squad in Thailand that get paid by the number of patients they bring to hospital or bodies to a morgue, leading them to be known locally as the "body snatchers."

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