A horrifying tiger attack at a Beijing safari park left a woman injured and her mother dead after they stepped out of their car during a tour of the park. The incident recently went viral on the internet, and we checked its veracity.
The incident is real, but it is not new. The tiger attack happened in 2016, at China’s Badaling Wildlife World. The incident occurred at a tiger safari park where visitors can drive through and view various exotic animals in a more natural setting. The 32-year-old woman, identified only by her surname, Zhao, reportedly got out of her car after an argument with her husband. Security camera footage captured the moment a tiger pounced on her, dragging her away from the vehicle.
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We do not know why the woman got out of the car. While the Internet was quick to blame her for doing it after an argument with husband, her family later said that she stepped out ebcause she felt car-sick.
In the video, we can see that Zhao steps out of the right side of the car, walks around the front of the car, and opens the left-side door. Then, startled, she looks behind her and within seconds, a huge tiger pounces on her, dragging her out of view of the camera. A man jumps out of the car, looks confused and tries to run after the woman. A woman – the woman’s mother jumps out of the rear seat and runs after the tiger and her daughter.
We do not know exactly what happened afterward, but Zhao escaped (maybe because her mother distracted the tiger). Zhao’s 57-year-old mother, surnamed Li , however was attacked by another tiger when she was outside and seriously injured. We can see park rangers arriving at the scene in the video immediately aftewards, but Li died from her injuries before medical help could be provided.
Almost everyone blamed Zhao in the aftermath of the incident. She had sustained serious injuries in the attack, and later filed a lawsuit against the Beijing Wild Animal Park, alleging negligence and failure to provide adequate safety measures to protect visitors. The lawsuit seeks compensation for medical expenses, mental anguish, and the loss of her mother.
Zharo said in an interview that she stepped out because she felt car-sick. And that while she signed a document exonerating the park of any responsibility in any such accident, she had not read it as no one asked her to read it before they started driving through the park. This explanation did not satisfy most in China, who thought the explanation was rubbish and shirking all responsibility.
The park has faced criticism in the past for its safety procedures, with some questioning whether the animals’ enclosures are secure enough. The latest incident has reignited the debate over the safety of these types of attractions and prompted calls for stricter regulations.
The tiger enclosure was temporarily closed to visitors and later re-opened. We do know that the case went to court, but there is no information on a verdict or whether the woman received any compensation. The park had expressed its willingness to offer compensation out of ‘compassion’ but not because of any legala obligation to do the same.
Several instances of people beign careless dring wildlife safaris have come out over the years – and in India too, people have behaved irresponsibly with wild elephants and tigers.
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