Woman Left With £2,000 Medical Bill After Being Bitten By Sea Lion

by : Lucy Connolly on : 15 Feb 2020 18:58
Woman Left With £2,000 Medical Bill After Being Bitten By Sea LionWoman Left With £2,000 Medical Bill After Being Bitten By Sea LionCaters News

A woman was left with a £2,000 medical bill after being bitten by a sea lion while travelling through Western Australia.


Elena Precillia, 25, was swimming with a raft of sea lions at Seals’ Rocks in Geraldton when the incident occurred and one of the animals lunged for her leg.

She was left with horrifying puncture wounds on her thigh, which ended up requiring 20 stitches at a nearby hospital.

You can watch the moments before the attack below:


Elena, a French-born pastry chef, decided to explore the ocean with her friend Mauro Signoretti after being told by locals that the sea lions were friendly.

She explained:

Locals had told us that the sea lions were friendly, and that many went there without a tour guide or anything like that. It was an amazing experience, as they liked to dance with us, playing and jumping out of the water.

However, as the travellers returned the next day for a third swim with the animals, Elena was attacked by one of them and was left needing an operation and a course of antibiotics to prevent infection from the sea lion’s bacteria.


The traveller said all she saw in the moment was a ‘sea lion in front of [her]’, stating: ‘when I turned my back, he bit me.’

Describing the attack, Elena said it was on the back of her right leg and she could see ‘straight away’ the sea lion had drawn blood.

She said:


The pain was shock – I couldn’t really feel thanks to the adrenaline, but I couldn’t swim to get out of the water.

I was in panic, unable to breath well and was terrified as there were still four or five of the sea lions around us. My friend, Mauro had to get me back to shore as I was panicking.


Mauro helped get her out of the ocean, swimming out to her and rescuing her before she was taken to the nearby Geraldton Regional Hospital.

It was there Elena underwent an operation to clean her leg and make sure it dried well, with doctors having to keep an eye on the wound because there was a high risk of infection due to the sea lion’s rare bacteria.

Elena had to spend roughly £2,000 on her treatment, with the price set to continue rising.


Following the attack, Elena said she will ‘definitely never’ go back to swim with sea lions, and will ‘never’ recommend someone else to do it.

‘They are still wild animals, and in such close proximity, we never know what can happen,’ she added.

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Lucy Connolly

A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).

Topics: Animals, Australia, Health, Medical Bills, Sea Lions