Angry elephant herd surround British and attack during South African Safari tour

This was when a group of remaining horror TV crew members trembled with fear as an angry elephant trampled to death repeatedly into their hunting truck during a trip to South Africa.

What was supposed to be relaxing for a group of ten British and Australians turned into an experience of a lifetime when they encountered a herd of 40 elephants.

TV crew tourists booked into a safari lodge in South Africa for a holiday after filming the Australian version of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! in Kruger National Park.

The stampeding herd of mainly female elephants and young calves flee from lions across a dirt road in front of the safari truck

The huge herd had panicked when a pride of hungry lions was spotted by adult elephants stalking their vulnerable calves.

The lions were looking for an easy kill, but as the male elephants continued to attack, the rest of the herd extinguished for safety and the tourists found themselves stuck in the middle.

TV producer Trent Holmes, 40, who filmed the incredible encounter, said: ‘Our guide Gert Kruger heard trumpeting as we were out in the bush and said a nearby herd was moving very fast.

“He took us down a dirt track to see what was going on and suddenly rushed in from our right, trumpeting and smashing through the trees and bushes that were this huge herd of upset elephants.

“They were moving really fast, and Gert turned off the engine so as not to scare them off and let them pass, but it turned out we were in the middle of this part of the herd and the rest of it.

An angry elephant bringing up the rear of the first part of the herd confronts the safari truck and stares down the tourists onboard
Another towering elephant, believed to be female, charges out of bush at safari truck for blocking stampede the herd’s route which ironically darted straight in front of the tourists
The group in their safari truck – TV producer Trent Holmes, 40, (back far right) filmed the incredible stampede at Kruger National Park

‘One was in front of us with big tusks, and it was scary, but we thought then they all went into the bush.

“Then, from our left, a large elephant that I thought was a female darted through the trees with her ears flaring and trumpeting, and I have never been so scared.

‘Ranger Gert was very calm and just yelled at the elephant: ‘Relax, come on, move off’.

“It stopped charging, and you see and hear us on the video laughing and seeing us smiling, but trust me, it was a nervous reaction because we were all so scared because the elephant was so big.

“Then it came back and sped again through the trees with the trunk sticking out, and one of our group begged Gert to drive away, and he said, ‘Calm down guys. We can’t go now. We have to wait for it out”.

After a quick retreat, the massive female comes back through the bush on its third and most aggressive charge
Showing its intentions this time, a female elephant with two babies aggressively stomps across from the right side of the side, fearing its route to the rest of the herd is cut off
Fed up with the safari truck, two elephants approach from behind with a third nearby and show their frustration at being disturbed

“Then we were attacked a third time by the same elephant, and it got so close that its trunk was pointed towards us and I can’t tell you how terrified we were, but Gert just said: “Hey, calm down”.

“Then we saw more elephants coming from our right and realized we were caught in the middle of the herd, which is why Gert says the elephants on the left are upset with us.

“In the end, we had two big ones coming right up to us and looking at us and putting their trunks near us, but Gert remained calm and told us to relax and keep quiet.

“Once the herd had passed, he felt it was safe to start the engine, and we slowly left, followed by three or four elephants herding us.

“Believe me, the relief of the distance between us was amazing.

‘It was the most incredible experience, and not many people would say they have been in the middle of a trampling elephant herd, but Gert was amazing and very calmly arranged the situation.

‘He said, “It happens every day”, but none of us really believed him!

“Then I asked him why he didn’t start the truck and get out, and he said they were agitated when there were lions around, and they could have attacked and overturned our car.

“The lions were a threat, he said not us and he told us to relax, it was his experience and skill that we had to rely on, but when you’re in the situation, you will be terrified.”

One of the tusked mammals gets eyeball to eyeball with the terrified tourists, standing as close as a few feet away
A few elephants see off the safari truck as the driver starts its engine and retreats
The terrified group later posed in front of their safari truck. Trent Holmes (center in blue shirt) hangs from the side of the modified pickup truck
Safari ranger Gert Kruger who was the guide for the TV crew tourists ‘was calm and telling us just to relax and to keep quiet’

Mr Holmes from Sydney, Australia, said: ‘The trumpeting’s noise and the ears flaring when they charged us is with me forever.

Mr Holmes said: ‘We had a great safari, but the next morning when Gert woke us up, we went out again and asked what we wanted to go and saw we all said ‘anything but elephants’ and he laughed!”

Elephants can weigh up to 6000kg and stand up to 11 feet tall and are known to destroy cars and safari vehicles when angered and kill around 500 people a year worldwide.