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Chilean Cyclist Nearing Record Killed By Truck In Rural Thailand

A rural highway in southern Thailand photographed in 2013. Congestion and reckless driving are not uncommon on the country's roads and thoroughfares.

A Chilean man who began an around-the-world bicycle journey four years ago, and was closing in on a Guinness distance record, has been killed. He was hit by a passing pickup truck while he was stopped on the side of a highway in rural Thailand. His Singaporean wife and 2-year-old son, who were traveling with him, sustained minor injuries.

The Bangkok Post says the accident occurred near Korat, about 140 miles northeast of Bangkok:

"[Juan Francisco] Guillermo and his family had made a rest stop at a police checkpoint in Khon Kaen's Phon district on Saturday morning before heading off to Nakhon Ratchasima with the bicycle pulling a carriage. Before they left the checkpoint, Guillermo told a policeman he would later travel to Australia.

"The accident happened when a speeding pickup truck driven by Tiwarat Ratchaipidet, aged 64, scraped the bicycle on the roadside. The cyclist was thrown from the bicycle and died on the spot."

The newspaper said the driver of the truck, who was unhurt, was charged with "careless driving resulting in death and injury."

The Guardian says: "Guillermo's wife was on another bicycle with their two-year-old son and suffered a slight sprain in the accident, said police Col Torsak Thammingmongkol. It was not clear how long they had accompanied Guillermo in his round-the-world cycling odyssey."

Guillermo, 47, was hoping to break a world record by cycling more than 155,000 miles on five continents within five years.

In 2013, a British couple trying to set a similar cycling record were killed by a pickup truck on a Thai highway east of Bangkok.

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