Are Exotic Animals to Blame for Recent San Francisco Zoo Killing? - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Are Exotic Animals to Blame for Recent San Francisco Zoo Killing?

Updated: Dec 27, 2007 06:53 PM CST

On Christmas Day a tiger escaped from the San Francisco Zoo killing one man and severly injuring two. After the tragedy, zoos and other animal parks are hearing questions concerning visitors safety when exotic animals are near. KTEN's Hailee Holliday reports.

Animal experts say exotic animals like this are not to blame for simply being wild. The news traveled fast on Christmas Day after a 300 pound Siberian tiger escaped from her open air exhibit, killed a zoo visitor and mauled two more.     

How the animal escaped is still under investigation but many animal experts believe human error was involved.     

The G.W. Exotic Animal Park in Wynnewood is currently the home of 182-tigers. According to volunteers, these animals are by no means pets or tame and visiting customers are constantly watched by staff.     

Visitors are to stay behind safety barriers in front of the animal's inclosed cages. Those who work at the animal park hope the recent tragedy doesn't escalate to the point that zoos and animal parks will start shutting down.  

Volunteer, Joe Schreibvogel, says, "more people die in a car than are killed by tigers. When you are working with exotic animals of this nature, expect the unexpected sooner or later. It's just the nature of the beast."

Volunteers say so far no one has been weary of visiting the park after the accident. They add that never before has a customer been injured while visiting the park.

Hailee Holliday, KTEN News