Jennifer Brown reportedly suffered serious head and neck injuries in the attack

By Gabrielle Chung
May 29, 2020 05:41 PM
Shoalhaven Zoo

An Australian zookeeper is in critical condition after she was attacked by two lions on Friday, according to police.

Jennifer Brown, 35, suffered serious head and neck injuries in what a local paramedic described as an "extremely vicious" attack inside a lion enclosure at the Shoalhaven Zoo, 9 News Australia reported.

Brown was attacked while cleaning the lion habitat at the zoo, which had been temporarily shut down due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, according to the outlet.

Authorities said two zoo employees were able to secure the lions shortly after the attack.

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Brown was unconscious when emergency services arrived on scene, according to police.

"This is one of the worst jobs I have ever experienced," Faye Stockmen, the first NSW Ambulance paramedic to enter the lion enclosure to treat Brown, told 9 News Australia. "I have never come across a job like this in my career."

"It was absolutely harrowing," she said. "It is an incredibly dangerous situations, both for the patient and the paramedics."

Stockmen added that being inside the enclosure was "one of the most frightening experiences" and described the attack as "extremely vicious."

Brown was airlifted to St. George Hospital in Sydney, where she currently remains in a critical condition, 9 News Australia reported.

Police Detective Superintendent Greg Moore said an investigation is ongoing and it was too early to tell whether the lions need to be put down, according to Associated News.

Shoalhaven Zoo did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.