Truck bearing circus elephants leaves road

Oct. 16, 2012 at 1:56 PM

BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss., Oct. 16 (UPI) -- The Mississippi Highway Patrol said a truck carrying four circus elephants ran off the highway and into a wooded area, but the driver and animals were unharmed.

MHP Master Sgt. Johnny Poulos said driver Terence Crowley of Hugo, Okla., told troopers another vehicle merged into his lane Sunday night on Interstate 10, near the 8 mile-marker in Hancock County, forcing him off the highway and into a wooded area, the Biloxi Sun Herald reported Tuesday.

Poulos said the truck's front axle broke, but the vehicle remained upright and neither the driver nor the animals were injured.

Firefighters said the owners of the elephants, the Cole Brothers Circus of the Stars, sent workers to help offload the beasts and keep them at the side of the highway until a tow truck could come take the trailer and three of the animals to a rest stop, where another driver picked up the trailer.

One of the elephants was uncooperative and had to be moved separately, authorities said.

The elephants had been due to perform Monday in Hammond, La.

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