Campers parked on B.C. highway surprised by cougar

Video shows animal slowly approaching vehicle until engine starts

Campers caught footage of a cougar approaching their car in the forests of Vancouver Island recently.

They were about 75 km southwest of Campbell River on Highway 28 when the encounter took place, said Oren Hanscomb, who was among the campers.

They had pulled over on the soft shoulder of the highway when the cougar “poked its head over the ledge,” said Hanscomb in an email.

They rolled up the windows of the vehicle as the animal slowly advanced. The video shows it approaching the car until Hanscomb starts the engine.

“I turned my Jeep on just to make sure it stayed away, which worked,” he said. “Then soon after we just left.”

The sighting took place on July 6.

People who encounter wildlife like cougars on the road are advised to stay in their vehicle, and to consider not stopping. This keeps them from becoming accustomed to people.

Provincial conservation authorities advise anyone who encounters a cougar to stay calm, keep the animal in view and pick up any children immediately. The noise and movements of frightened children could startle the animal, provoking an attack. Then back away slowly, making sure the cougar has a way to escape.

People who encounter a cougar are also advised to make themselves seem as large as possible. Never turn your back on a cougar, and never run from it.

If followed by a cougar, respond with aggression: show your teeth, maintain eye contact and make loud noises. Grab rocks or sticks to arm yourself.

And fight back if the cougar attacks, striking at its face and eyes, and using anything available as a weapon.

If a cougar poses an immediate threat to public safety, call the Conservation Office’s hotline: 1-877-952-7277.

More information about cougars and other wild animals can be found at the BC Conservation Foundation’s WildSafeBC website and the provincial government’s “Staying Safe Around Wildlife” website.

Just Posted

Rural dividend grants awarded in Kootenay West

Kootenay West MLA Katrine Conroy made the grant announcements in Trail on Thursday

West Kootenay gleaner’s group gets big funding boost

CBT grant allows project to save more local produce from compost bin

Fruitvale man identified in fatal zipline accident in Thailand

Spencer Donaldson, 25, was from Fruitvale, B.C., the city’s mayor has confirmed

RDCK passes climate change ‘call to arms’

Director says the statement will help guide policy

Facing high regulatory barriers, Kootenay cannabis producers gather for support

Symposium on barriers facing legalization attended by hundreds

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Police probe eight fires set at B.C. elementary school

Nanaimo RCMP say fires appear to have been set intentionally

Most Read