American YouTuber known as “My Mate Nate” will be summoned by the railway police for questioning over his latest stunt for flattening coins on the rail track which was posted in his YouTube channel.
Pol Maj-Gen Surapong Thanomchit, commander of railway police, said Friday (July 14) that legal action would be taken against the controversial YouTuber, identified as Nate Bartling if his stunt was deemed illegal.
State Railway of Thailand (SRT) deputy governor Thanongsak Pongprasert, meanwhile, said Bartling’s stunt was inappropriate and might cause train derailment. He indicated that the American might have committed civil and criminal offences.
The deputy governor went on saying that he had instructed the railway police to summon Bartling for questioning to find out his real motive for carrying out the stunt by flattening the coins on the rail track to be crushed by train.
The video was posted on July 13 and got almost 600,000 views in less than 24 hours.
The SRT also issued a statement on Friday evening, saying that the video of the stunt staged by My Mate Nate which was posted in the Facebook page might tarnish the SRT’s image as far as public safety and confidence in travelling by train are concerned.
Citing Railway and Highway Act B.E. 2454, SRT said that unauthorized outsiders are not allowed to shoot a film in the compound of the SRT because it is regarded as territory to provide services to the public and any violation of the law is regarded as a petty offence.
The railway police are empowered to summon the violator for questioning, the statement said.
The statement added that although the flattening of coins on the track will not cause immediate train derailment because coins are softer than the track as they were made with tin, but if the stunt is done repeatedly, it might cause damage to the tracks which may, in the end, result in train derailment.
Also, the flattened coins may fly and hurt someone and the people who stage the stunt may get hurt or killed by train, the statement added.
Having heard about the summons to be served on him, Bartling pulled out his video clip about the stunt from YouTube and posted an explanation about his stunt on his Facebook page.
He said that he had done some research on scientific studies undertaken abroad about flattening coins on the rail tracks and all the studies confirmed that coins would not cause any damage to the track and would not cause train derailment “because coins are flat objects and the metal used to make coins are softer than the track.
Bartling said that the traces left on the track were glue from the tape used to fasten coins to the track and he had already removed the traces.
He claimed that the stunt was carried out to find out the coin of which country is the strongest and most durable. He quickly said that no Thai coins were used in the stunt.
“We apologize if our content has upset some people. I apologize this time and for the last time. I know some groups of people still chastise me, but it does not matter. I and my staff will try to improve the content of the video that somebody may feel it is a nonsense, but it is for entertainment sake,” said Bartling in his statement in the social media.
In another Facebook post, Bartling said railway police had already contacted him and summoned him for questioning.
“I will stop making new video for a while,” he said.
My Mate Nate became a subject of widespread criticism in the social media some months ago when he posted a footage in the social media featuring a fight between a cat and scorpions. The controversial clip also prompted animal protection groups to demand charges to be brought against him for cruelty against animals.