Last updated: 12:39 PM ET, Wed June 03 2015

Tourist Attacked by Bison at Yellowstone National Park

Impacting Travel | Donald Wood | June 03, 2015

Tourist Attacked by Bison at Yellowstone National Park

Visiting Yellowstone National Park is on many tourists’ bucket list, but it is not without its dangers, as a tourist found out when he was attacked by one of the park's wild bison Tuesday.

According to Phil Gast and Jethro Mullen of, a 62-year-old tourist from Australia did not abide by the warnings to stay 25 yards away from the animals, instead venturing within three to five feet of a bison. The wild animal charged the man and tossed him into the air several times, seriously injuring him, according to park officials.

The incident took place near the lodge in the Old Faithful section of the park.

Yellowstone officials said that a group of people was encroaching too close to the bison when it attacked the man who was snapping photographs. The Australian tourist was rushed to a local hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

This is the second incident involving a bison attack in recent weeks, as a 16-year-old Taiwanese student was gored by the animal on May 15. Just as the Australian man was too close to the animal, park officials claimed the Taiwanese girl and her group were also closer than they should have been.

The official Yellowstone website states that bison attacks happen each year, and some are even fatal. The giant creatures have the ability to run three times faster than humans, and safety protocols recommend staying 25 yards away and being inside a hard-sided vehicle.

The entire bison population in the park—2,300 to 5,000 of the wild animals—are protected and entitled to free roam all over the property. There are clear warning signs throughout the park, but some visitors sometimes do not heed the advice and get dangerously close.

As seen on Tuesday, not following the rules at Yellowstone can have serious consequences.

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