Mbajane the bull elephant, which translates to ‘cannabis’, charged at Enock Kufandada, 50, before repeatedly stamping his body into the ground on the Zambia – Zimbabwe border.
Park rangers were called in to control the horrific scene as officials ushered tourists from the UK, America and Australia to safety.
Mbajane was still in a rage and deemed a danger to others after the incident so he was brought down and killed with several high velocity bullets.
Workers said Mr Kufandada had been attacked twice before by the same elephant but survived.
Clement Mukwasi of the Employers Association of Tourism and Safari Operators said “The profession of elephant handling is a high risk one and deaths happen.
“We can confirm this sad incident which is the third in the last 10 years” he said.
Handler Mr Kufandada appears to have his left arm torn off along with both legs and it is not clear if he has been impaled with the stick used to control the elephant.
His blood soaked body was covered with sack cloth until the local police force had been called to the scene and then it was removed from the tourist area at Victoria Falls.
Mr Mukwasi hinted that elephants can “keep grudges” for many years against a handler if it has ever been mistreated during the process of training it for tourist rides.
Witnesses told local media that they heard screams and found the dead body torn apart and the 30-year-old bull elephant nearby clearly still enraged and in a bad temper.
The World Animal Protection action group said in a statement that the incident was “another sad reminder that elephants are wild animals and should not be ridden.”
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