A runaway tiger bit the hand of a zookeeper and attacked two others at a safari park near Tokyo.
The 10-year-old Bengal boy was found wandering the Nasu Safari Park, based in Tochigi prefecture, as staff prepared to open around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday morning.
The 330-pound (150 kg) beast, which is about two meters (6.5 feet) long, had not been properly fenced off within its enclosure the night before, the Kyodo news agency reported.
When three staff members returned the next morning, they encountered the creature in a hallway leading to a display area and were savagely attacked.
A worker, in her 20s, lost her hand and was taken to the hospital by helicopter.
A second woman received several bites to the body while a worker sustained injuries to the back of the head.
Both workers, also in their 20s, had to be transferred to the hospital.
The 10-year-old Bengal boy was found wandering around Nasu Safari Park (pictured), based in Tochigi prefecture, as staff prepared to open around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday morning.
The 330-pound (150 kg) beast, which is about two meters (6.5 feet) long, had not been properly fenced within its enclosure the night before, the Kyodo news agency reported (file photo).
According to Kyodo, the guards did not properly check that the tiger cage fence was closed on Tuesday, after they had returned it inside after the exhibition was over.
The park closed for the day and police are now investigating to see if mismanagement played a role in the incident.
The fate of the tiger has not been reported.
The park’s latest tweet, posted on Wednesday, reads: ‘An accident occurred at the tiger compound on the morning of January 5 and a worker was injured.
‘We are currently confirming the status of the employees and are investigating the cause of the accident.
We will tell you all more as soon as we understand the details.
“For now, the park will be closed.”
Nasu Safari Park offers specialized bus tours and for customers in their own cars to view its collection of around 700 animals, including giraffes and elephants.
The park has had security incidents before, including lions being attacked by lions in 1997 and 2000, according to Kyodo.
This week’s attack comes just days after a zoo keeper in Florida in the US was attacked by a tiger when he allegedly reached through the fence to pet it.
The graphic video from December 29 shows River Rosenquist, 26, from Naples, bloodied and on the ground in the tiger enclosure of the Naples Zoo as he screams in pain: ‘Please help me! Please help! Oh my God! Shoot him! I’m going to die!’
Collier County Sheriff’s Deputies attempted to kick the compound, where Eko, an eight-year-old Malayan tiger, was housed in an attempt to get the animal to free the worker.
Police body camera video shows the horrific moment when a Florida police officer shot and killed a tiger after he grabbed the arm of a zoo cleaner, River Rosenquist, 26, who tried to pet and feed him. .
Eko (pictured), an eight-year-old Malay tiger, was killed Wednesday night after an officer hit him with a single shot.
After a failed attempt, the deputy, believing he had no other options, fired a single shot at the tiger in an attempt to save Mr. Rosenquist’s life.
Eko could be grunting by the time the fatal shot was fired, then retreated to the rear of the compound where he died.
Agents were called to the zoo around 6.26 p.m. last Wednesday after Rosenquist allegedly violated park rules by entering the tiger enclosure.
Preliminary investigations revealed that he was supposed to be cleaning the restrooms and the gift shop when he decided to enter an unauthorized area of the tiger enclosure and reached in.
He appeared to be stroking or feeding the tiger, both of which, according to police, were “unauthorized and dangerous activities.”
Eko is then believed to have grabbed his arm and attempted to lead him to the compound, prompting authorities to intervene.
“Our deputy did everything he could in that situation and ultimately made the only possible decision he could to save this man’s life,” Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk said in a news release.
‘This was a tragic encounter in our world-class zoo facilities. We value our community partnership with the Naples Zoo and its focus on conservation and education. ‘
Rosenquist can now face criminal charges.