BARNAUL, April 11. /TASS/. A tiger has attacked a 14-year-old girl at a zoo in Barnaul, in Siberia’s Altai Territory, injuring her leg, the local police told TASS on Monday.
The attack occurred on Sunday evening when two underage girls trespassed into the Lesnaya Skazka (Forest Fairy Tale) zoo that was closed for visitors, investigators said.
"One of them climbed over the fence near the tiger’s cage. As a result, the animal snatched the underage girl’s legs. She was rescued by passers-by who managed to distract the predator and drag the child from the cage," the police statement said.
The girl was hospitalized with wounds but her life is not under threat. Eyewitnesses called the police shortly after the incident. An investigation has been launched to assess the actions of the workers who allowed strangers to stay at the zoo’s territory.
The zoo’s deputy head Pavel Reznichenko told TASS the tiger named Lotus, who attacked the girl, was "normal and adequate." The attack occurred after the girls started feeding the tiger with meat. "They angered him and that’s why he nabbed her," he said.
The animal could have been infuriated with the alcohol smell coming from one of the girls, the official added.