Chinese man ‘who missed his mum’ dies after drinking weedkiller

Doctors at victim’s local hospital said he had consumed so much paraquat he could not be saved

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 May, 2018, 3:41pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 05 June, 2018, 12:56pm

A young man from southwestern China died last week after drinking pesticide, apparently because he was upset that his mother had moved away from the family home in search of work.

Xie Yuntao, 19, died at his home in Lianghe county, Sichuan province, on Saturday, two weeks after swallowing about 70 millilitres of the herbicide paraquat, Chengdu Business Daily reported on Tuesday.

Xie told his father on May 8 that he had drunk the toxic liquid, the older man, Xie Shaokui, was quoted as saying.

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His father, a farmer, then found a bottle of paraquat near his son’s bed.

“He said he drank about 70ml. That’s a lot, and you basically cannot be saved,” he said.

Xie took his son to hospital but doctors there said that because of how much of the poison he had taken there was nothing they could do to save him. They suggested he return home to die.

The family wanted to send Xie to a bigger hospital in Chengdu, the provincial capital, but could not afford to, the report said.

Xie’s cousin was quoted as saying that the family spent almost 20,000 yuan (US$3,100) on his medical treatment and had nothing left.

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Xie Shaokui said that his son told him he did not mean to take his life but wanted to appeal to his mother to return home. She had left some time ago to find work in the city, the report said.

When Xie called his mother to ask her to come home – after he had taken the poison – she said she could not as she had to earn money to pay for her younger children’s education, the report said.