The Circus explains their reasons to phase out the show’s elephants by 2018.
We came to the conclusion that our resources were better used saving these magnificent animals rather than fighting legislation. We’re in the live family entertainment business not in fighting City Hall all across the United States. It was a bittersweet decision. For 145 years everyone has been able to experience Ringling Brothers with elephants.
The Circus is phasing out the use of elephants for its performances. Growing public concern over the animals’ treatment as well as ‘anti-circus’ and ‘anti-elephant’ ordinances led to the decision. Thirteen elephants will continue to tour with the circus before they are retired to the Center for Elephant Conservation in 2018.
There’s been somewhat of a mood shift among our consumers. A lot of people aren’t comfortable with us touring with our elephants.
Nine performers are injured while performing a “human chandelier” act in Providence, Long Island. The metal frame holding eight of the women broke free, crashing to the floor, landing on a ninth woman. Officials have described the injuries as non-life threatening. The circus is scheduled to reopen Thursday in Hartford, Connecticut.
Dessi Espana, 32, falls 30 feet, landing on a concrete floor. The fall happens while Espana is twirling on long chiffon scarves as part of an aerial performance. No safety harness is used due to the movements in the performance. This is the first fatal accident in a Ringling Bros. circus in a decade.
A 425 feet long circus tent packed with 7,000 people burst in flames during a performance in Hartford, Connecticut. Part of the blame lays on the waterproof canvas coated in paraffin wax dissolved in gasoline. 6,000 make it out safely while 186 perish, mostly women and children. Five Ringling Bro. officials are found guilty of involuntary manslaughter.