A zoo-keeper who died Monday after getting mauled by a tiger in a British wildlife park has been identified as 33 year-old Rosa King.
Over 100 visitors were evacuated from Hamerton Zoo in Cambridgeshire, amid rumors that an dangerous animal was on the loose.
Police said the tiger entered the enclosure King was working in around 11 am on Monday and attacked her in what zoo management has described as a “freak accident”.
They confirmed the accident was not suspicious and that the animal never escaped from the cage.
Witness Pete Davies, who was on a day out with his family, told BBC 5 he heard some “commotion” near the tiger enclosure were Ms King was attacked.
“We just heard a scream and one of the girls just shouted ‘run'”
“It was a case of total panic. There were keepers rushing about throwing buckets of meat to try and get the tigers under control.”
Tributes from friends and colleagues have since poured in.
Wildlife photographer Garry Chisholm, 59, remembered his friend as a “shining light” and “focal point” of the zoo’s life.
“Rosa wasn’t just a keeper at Hamerton Zoo – she was Hamerton Zoo,” he said.
“She was the absolute central point of it, the focal point of it. She was the shining light of it.
“She will be greatly missed, not just by me, but by everyone who came to know her.
According to Cambridgeshire Constabulary, the tiger responsible for King’s death has not been harmed.
In a press statement on Monday, zoo officials said they were “too distressed to speak directly to the media” but confirmed a full investigation is currently under way.”
Hamerton Park is home to about 500 animals from over 100 species, including tigers.