LEESBURG – A circus employee was injured Monday night after falling out of a moving Barnum & Bailey Circus train as it chugged through the county between appearances.

The Norfolk-Southern rail company called the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department just before 9 p.m. Monday, saying a passenger had fallen from a moving train in Leesburg. Police and medics arrived to find a man sitting on the tracks just north of Van Buren Street, conscious but suffering from major leg injuries and complaining of head injuries.

The man, who was not identified by police, was taken to Kosciusko Community Hospital, then airlifted to a Fort Wayne hospital.

Stephen Payne, spokesman for Feld Entertainment, parent company of Barnum & Bailey, said this morning that the man was “going to be OK.”

Payne would not identify the man, saying only that he is a circus worker.

According to the sheriff’s department, the man had been leaning against a door in a vestibule between two rail cars  when it opened, ejecting the man from the moving train. The man fell onto the stones just off the tracks below.

Susan Terpay, a spokeswoman for the rail company, said the man may have been standing near steps to board or deboard the train when he tumbled from the locomotive, striking the ground below.

The sheriff’s department said alcohol may have been involved in the incident.

Payne would not speculate what the circumstances were that led to the man’s fall, saying he does not have complete information on the incident, adding that Feld’s priority is safety.

“The safety of all of the people and animal on our trains is  of paramount importance to us,” said Payne.

He said Feld will work along side the railway and local law enforcement during the investigation.

The sheriff’s department said Norfolk-Southern Railroad police arrived at the scene and took over the investigation. The railroad police hold jurisdiction over the tracks because they cross state lines.

The train was on its way to Moline, Ill., from a show in Marion.