AN elephant was killed and two others were injured after a circus truck carrying them crashed in Southern Spain.
Some elephants were left roaming loose on the motorway, while another was stranded injured in a ditch beside the road.
Video footage showed emergency services lifting the animals with a crane from a motorway in Pozo Canada in Albacete.
Se está procediendo a la asistencia y evacuación de los elefantes heridos en el accidente que ha tenido lugar en Albacete. De los cinco paquidermos hay uno muerto y dos heridos. En breve de restablecerá la circulación en la A-30 en el pk 22/23. pic.twitter.com/fhGypNDYGm
— Gregorio Serrano (@Gserrano_DGT) April 2, 2018
According to officials the circus lorry, which was carrying five elephants, overturned after attempting to overtake a car.
General Director of Traffic for Spain’s Interior Minister, Gregorio Serrano, tweeted shocking videos of the incident and said: “We are in the process of assisting and evacuating the elephants which were injured in the accident which took place in Albacete.
“Out of the five pachyderms, one is dead and two are injured.
“Shortly we will reestablish the traffic on the A-30 on the pk 22/23.”
It is believed the driver was left unharmed.
Political animal activist party, PACMA, has denounced the circus, Circo Gottani, to Hellin Ayuntamiento and called for its licence to be revoked.
The party tweeted: “Elephants should be in the wild – free and in peace. Not in Pozo Canada being transported to shows where they are abused.”
PACMA officials are working ‘tirelessly around the clock’ to stop the surviving elephants from returning to the circus and took to social media to make the hashtag #FreeGottaniElephants viral.