A 61-year-old Chinese man who earned fame by travelling around the world on his rickshaw to promote the Olympic spirit, was hit by a truck in Argentina on Wednesday (18 October) and died on the spot.

Chen Guanming, who has nicknames like "Olympic madman" and "Chinese Forrest Gump", was on his way to the Glaciar Perito Moreno, located in the Los Glaciares National Park in the Argentinian province of Santa Cruz, when his rickshaw was hit by a truck, according to reports.

Police authorities have informed the Chinese embassy in the city of Buenos Aires about the road accident, according to the Austral News Agency.

Local police have arrested the truck driver after the accident on the Puerto San Julian highway near Santa Cruz, the Ejinsight news website reported.

The accident occurred only a few hours after Chen had posted a photo of himself and an Argentinian woman on the Chinese social media website Weibo.

Chen had also informed his fans through another post that he was facing a bit of difficulty while cycling on the road as the weather was windier than he had expected.

He first made headlines around the world for riding his rickshaw from his home in China to the Olympic city of Beijing in 2008, covering a distance of 500 miles (805km).

Chen – a farmer by profession – travelled across 16 countries, clocking up around 37,000 miles (59,546km) in his rickshaw in just over two years, to make it to the London Games in 2012.

"I'm a big fan of Olympic Games," he had told the BBC back in 2012.

He had also mentioned to the media in Buenos Aires that he would like to make it to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Chen stated that he did not feel tired despite all the cycling he has done over the years, the Ejinsight news website reported.

"I have seen the world and made many friends," Chen had said in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil during the 2016 Rio Olympics, according to USA Today. "I want to tell the world that the Olympics is about peace."

Following the news of his death, netizens paid tribute to him, calling him "a true sportsman".