A worker at an exotic animal park in southern Sumter County was fatally mauled by a tiger Tuesday afternoon, authorities said.
The 49-year-old man, who handles various chores at Savage Kingdom, entered the tiger's cage to make repairs when the animal got loose and pounced, according to emergency officials.
Sumter County sheriff's investigators said they did not know how the tiger was restrained, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
Paramedics said the man suffered a fatal bite to his neck as well as severe injuries to his head, arm and ribs. The tiger was shot moments later as park workers called for help, about 2 p.m.
Savage Kingdom is operated by internationally famed cat expert Robert Baudy. Baudy, 79, was well-known during the early 1950s, when his animal acts were regularly featured on The Ed Sullivan Show.
Center Hill is about 40 miles west of Orlando.