MELBOURNE, Fla. -- A child was injured after entering a rhinoceros yard at a zoo in Florida on New Year's Day, zoo officials said.
The Brevard Zoo in Melbourne, Florida issued a statement saying the child was transported to a local hospital by ambulance with the family.
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The zoo says the rhino encounter where the child was injured is a hands-on educational experience with the zoo's white rhinoceroses. Participants are separated from the animals by a series of steel poles. Witnesses say the child stumbled and fell in between two of the poles, and that the snout of at least one rhino made contact with the child.
"Our number one concern is the safety and welfare of our guests and our hearts go out to the family" said Keith Winsten, the Zoo's executive director.
The zoo is suspending the rhino encounter until they have reviewed their processes and procedures.
Zoo spokesman Elliot Zirulnik says the zoo has offered the hands-on experience daily since 2009 without any incidents prior to Tuesday.
Child injured after entering rhinoceros enclosure at Florida zoo
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