Ignored Warnings Led to Komodo Dragon Attack

Tourist had been taking photos and got too close
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 5, 2017 3:26 AM CDT
Komodo Dragon Attacks Tourist Taking Photos
A Komodo dragon is seen on Komodo island in Indonesia.   (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara, File)

When traveling to unfamiliar lands, it pays to listen to the locals—especially when you're on the island of Komodo and they're telling you to stay away from the dragons. A 50-year-old Singaporean tourist who failed to heed that advice was severely bitten on the left leg after getting too close to the animals while they were feeding, the BBC reports. Authorities on the Indonesian island say the man, Lon Lee Alle, was taking photographs of the lizards and had ignored villagers' warnings. "He must have been too close. A Komodo doesn't like to be disturbed when eating," the chief of Komodo National Park tells the Jakarta Post.

The park chief says that to save money, Alle had been staying with local villagers and had been observing the Komodo dragons, the world's biggest lizards, away from the official area set up for tourists to watch the animals. The Post reports that residents were able to drag him away from the dragons, and he was rushed to a hospital on another island in a military speedboat. The animals have venomous bites and, in rare cases, have been known to kill people. The park chief says this is the first Komodo attack in five years. (A ban on treats "angered" the dragons.)

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