Boswell’s park lions bite again

2009-07-24 00:00

BOSWELL’S lions’ taste for car bumpers has become more marked, as yet another incident of the lions attacking a vehicle occurred at the Lion Park on Wednesday afternoon.

Dutch citizens Dawn Warder, her husband Lawrence Lamprecht, a two-year-old and two six-year-olds were visiting the park when they were surrounded by a pack of about 10 lions at around 2 pm. They were driving a hired silver Toyota Corolla.

“One of the lions clawed through the bumper, while another actually jumped at the car,” Warder told The Witness.

“My husband really had to put his foot down to get away; we actually might have hit one.”

The family circled the enclosure a few times trying to escape the lions, and finally began hooting to get the guards’ attention. They then sped through the gates, which the guards closed swiftly behind them.

“We were all very distressed,” Warder said, “The guards were visibly shaken.”

When Warder reported the incident in the front shop, she described how the saleswoman and a man in a ranger’s uniform both laughed it off, the man adding, “They didn’t mean anything by it”.

Warder told The Witness that they visited the Lion Park five years ago, and had really enjoyed their experience, adding,

“The animals were very docile”. She commented that then there had been many signs on the trees during their previous visit, which were missing on Wednesday. She confirmed Virashnee Pragastan’s statement following a similar incident on Sunday, July 19, saying, “There were definitely no signs”.

Warder was relieved that the car was hired and that they had signed indemnity forms, so that they were not liable for the damages. “We’ll never go there again,” she said.

Park owner Brian Boswell re-asserted that there are signs at the main gate and at the entrance to the lion enclosure instructing visitors to protect themselves and their cars, asking, “What other signs do you want?”. Boswell added that visitors are also instructed on vehicular safety at the main gate and at the shop, saying, “They’re told not to let the lions get near the tyres or the vehicles, and to just drive on”.

He did not see anything aberrant in the lions’ behaviour, again describing their behaviour as “playful”.

“[Visitors] think their cars are being eaten, but they’re not,” said Boswell.

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