The Cincinnati Zoo said Thursday it will re-open its gorilla exhibit next week with a higher, reinforced barrier after a 3-year-old boy got into the enclosure, leading to the fatal shooting of a male gorilla.
Zoo spokeswoman Michelle Curley said the outer barrier will now be 42 inches high – a half foot taller than before – with solid wood beams on top and at the bottom, plus knotted rope netting at the bottom.
The zoo said there had been no earlier breaches in Gorilla World’s 38-year history and that the previous barrier had passed multiple inspections by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, which accredits zoos.
“Our exhibit goes above and beyond standard safety requirements, but in light of what happened, we have modified the outer public barrier to make entry even more difficult,” zoo director Thane Maynard said in a statement.
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