Wildlife sanctuary revisits safety protocol

Posted at 8:13 PM, Apr 22, 2016

At least one animal sanctuary in Palm Beach County is revisiting their safety procedures.

A week after a tiger killed zookeeper Stacey Konwiser at the Palm Beach Zoo, David Hitzig at Busch Wildlife Sanctuary is going over security with his staff.

Hitzig is making sure his panther and bear exhibits are secure.

"Still have to go through multiple steps,"  says Hitzig.

He's double checking gates and enclosures, and reminding employees to avoid working alone.

"Our protocol is that these gates are closed at all times," says Hitzig.

Then comes the question of what to do should something similar to the Palm Beach Zoo attack. Their first priority is keeping the animal in one spot.

"The animal is contained. That is can't injure anybody else. Want to make sure as quickly as we can, separate the animal from the person," says Hitzig.

He says sometimes they can't handle these situations alone.

"We have people that we can reach out to in an emergency and have the fastest response possible."

He reached out to Jupiter Police, the nearest agency to his sanctuary to make sure officers know where to be for back-up.

"They're prepared, they know exactly what's going on. There's no confusion. They're going to make sure their dispatch center knows exactly what to do if a call should come in."