Sea lion drags girl into water off Steveston dock in Richmond, B.C.

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Sea lion drags girl into water off Steveston dock in Richmond, B.C.

Sep, 2009

Seal pulls 5-year-old from dock: B.C. father


Family slammed for 'reckless behaviour' after sea lion drags girl into water in Richmond, B.C.

Sea lion bites pose serious health risks that include amputation or death, according to the DFO


Port officials are lambasting the family of a young girl for "reckless behaviour" after she was dragged into the water by a sea lion off a dock at Steveston in Richmond, B.C. 

Robert Kiesman, chair of the Steveston Harbour Authority, said there are several signs posted at the popular tourist destination warning people not to feed the sea mammals that frequent the area. 

"You wouldn't go up to a grizzly bear in the bush and hand him a ham sandwich, so you shouldn't be handing a thousand-pound wild mammal in the water slices of bread," Kiesman said. 

"And you certainly shouldn't be letting your little girl sit on the edge of the dock with her dress hanging down after the sea lion has already snapped at her once. Just totally reckless behaviour."


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Family of girl grabbed by sea lion deny trying to feed it

Girl's quick-thinking grandfather a hero, dad says


Girl recovering

The girl suffered a superficial wound, five centimetres by 10 centimetres, on her lower body, Lau said.

The family said they rushed their daughter to B.C. Children's Hospital immediately after she was pulled into the water, and the girl was prescribed antibiotics.

Vancouver Aquarium officials warned that a sea lion bite could contain bacteria needing a specific form of treatment.


Lau said the family have been in touch with the aquarium about any other treatment the girl might require. 

While the family are pretty shaken up, Lau said, they're happy the girl is safe. 

"Only thing I care is God, she is safe. God, I didn't miss out anyone from my family at that moment. I could have gone organizing a funeral by now rather than doing interview," he said.

Lau credited the grandfather's quick thinking for the positive outcome. 

"If he had one- or two-second doubt about that, my girl could have been gone by then. That reaction, makes him a hero," he said.