The scene outside the Courtney Brothers Circus in Blackpool, Cork, shortly after a worker was injured by an elephant.
BRIAN O'CONNELL in Cork
April 1, 2012
A circus worker was taken to hospital last night with a suspected broken rib following an incident with an elephant at Courtney Brothers Circus in Blackpool, Cork.
He was injured by an unintentional blow after one elephant charged another in a holding area.
Medical workers and gardaí arrived on the scene shortly after 5pm and a male circus worker was taken by ambulance to hospital.
Jim Conway, general manager of Courtney Brothers Circus, confirmed the incident had taken place and that a circus worker was receiving medical treatment in hospital.
“As far as I have been told, two elephants were jostling outside the circus and a worker happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Mr Conway said.
"The bottom line is he will make a full recovery. It looks like he has a broken rib.” Mr Conway said the elephants in the circus had never been involved in a similar incident before and the circus has started an investigation.
The circus could not confirm if the elephant was the same one involved in an incident earlier this week, when Baby, a 2.5 tonne elephant entered the Blackpool retail Park.
Mr Conway also claimed the elephants could have been interfered with.
"There could be more to this. Since we came to Cork we have had two incidents. We have called in vets and asked them to take blood samples.
“We have our suspicions and have asked An Garda to investigate. There is something not right about all of this,” he said.
Earlier, a protest by an animal rights group passed off peacefully.