A 50-year-old died British man has been killed in an accident with a firework at a New Year’s Eve party in Thailand, local police revealed.
Gary McLaren, from Northamptonshire, died when a firework he was trying to light exploded in the seaside town of Pattaya.
A Foreign Office spokeswoman said they were supporting the family of a British man who died in Thailand.
Lt Col Somboon Ua-samanmaitree of the Thai Tourist Police said: “Around midnight, Mr McLaren attempted to light up a large firework but it failed to go off at first. After that, it suddenly exploded and killed him at the scene.”
Police said Mr McLaren, who was originally from Corby in Northamptonshire, had visited Thailand before and arrived a few days before New Year’s Eve.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr McLaren worked in a technical role for the International Road-Racing Teams Association, having previously worked for the Suzuki MotoGP team.
On social media, he was described as “one of the most popular” members of the Grand Prix motorcycle racing community, a “a great guy” and a “real professional”.
Awful news coming out of Thailand overnight. One of the most popular members of the @MotoGP paddock died last night. Gary was a great guy & always fun to be around, as well as being a real professional in his time with @suzukimotogp & recently with IRTA https://t.co/YWTSfaYGWG
— Tim Walpole (@tim_walpole) January 1, 2020
The Bangkok Post reported that police and rescue workers arrived to find a crowd of people and Mr McLaren lying on the ground with serious facial injuries. A large firework was found at the scene.
The paper said a witness described seeing the British man celebrating New Year’s Eve with friends. Mr McLaren tried and failed to light the firework before it suddenly exploded, the witness said.