By Michael Scott
These idiotic tourists – and their KIDS – risked their lives to take selfies with a dangerous hippo.
Tour guide and cruise boat captain Deiric Walsh spotted the hazardous scenes in Sunset Jetty, St Lucia, South Africa, earlier this month.
Deiric, from St Lucia, claims the holidaymakers ignore warnings to stay far back from the hippo in order to get pictures with the giant mammal.
Hippos are the world’s deadliest large land mammals, killing an estimated 500 people every year in Africa, and are known to be extremely aggressive and charge at speeds of up to 30mph.
In Deiric’s video, tour guides can be seen shouting at the sightseers to stay back while the adult male hippo, approximately 20 years old, stands mere feet away before beginning to move towards the group.
He said: “There was a stop where tourists leave and enter boats for river tours and the hippopotamus was eating grass on the back.
“The tourists, including children, were trying to get pictures of the animal on land.
“Tourists were warned to stay back by several staff members but ignored requests, so they could get close up pictures with the hippo.
“Hippos can reach speeds of 45km per hour in seconds.
“Humans underestimate them because they are fat like a cow, so we expect them to be slow, but when we realise they are dangerous it is usually too late.
“This hippo could have charged at any time.”
Although on this occasion nobody was attacked, Deiric said over the last year there has been numerous close encounters with hippos in the area.
Deiric said: “Recently, a man was attacked in his garden at 1am in the morning when he almost walked into a hippo in the dark.
“He survived but lost a leg and half of his stomach.”