Elephant Crushes Circus Trainer in Ireland

April 1, 2012 Updated: October 1, 2015
Elephant receives training from elephant keeper for circus performance.
Sumatran elephant receives training from elephant keeper for circus performance. (Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)

A circus trainer was hospitalized after he was trampled by an elephant at a circus in Ireland. His injuries were not life threatening.

The trainer was attempting to break up a fight that broke out between two elephants.

Jim Conway, general manager of Courtney Brothers Circus, the owner of the elephant, told the Irish Times that “as far as I have been told, two elephants were jostling outside the circus and a trainer happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

Animal Defenders International, a conservation group, called on circuses to end traveling elephant shows.

“This week’s escape of an elephant from Courtney Brothers Circus in Cork, Rep. of Ireland, could have easily resulted in disastrous consequences for both local people and the animal,” the group said in a statement.

Earlier during the week, another elephant in the same circus escaped and ran down the street before being captured.