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

Smoky skies force flight cancellations

Air quality in West Kootenay also a health concern

Castlegar mayor Lawrence Chernoff will run again

Chernoff has been mayor for 13 years

UPDATE: Fire forces closures and delays on Highway 3 at Kootenay Pass

Motorists should detour using Kootenay Lake ferry

Trail airport plays integral role in fighting B.C. wildfires

In two weeks, 20,000+ litres of Jet fuel have been pumped into heli-tankers from YZZ

Castlegar Council Briefs

First Committee of the Whole meeting goes well.

Happy birthday Boler: An anniversary gathering of the cutest campers in Winnipeg

Hundreds of the unique trailers in Winnipeg to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Manitoba invention

Court sides with developer in Jumbo ‘substantially started’ dispute

Resort developer successfully argues 2014 decision that halted the project was unfair

Canada’s tax system unfairly favours wealthy, poll of CRA auditors suggests

Four of every five respondents think loopholes and tax credits built into the system benefit the rich

Banff’s Sunshine ski resort upset with proposed guidelines from Parks Canada

The plan would allow for more visitors but wouldn’t let Sunshine build additional facilities

Conditions improve for battling northwest B.C. wildfires, minister says

‘Self-evacuated’ people fleeing smoke advised to go home

UPDATED: B.C. matching Red Cross donations for victims of wildfires

Donations being taken by many organizations, BC Hydro waiving bills

Woodpecker goes out with a bang, starts grassfire in B.C. city

Untimely death of woodpecker causes power outage in Cawston

Communities on evacuation alert in many areas of B.C. as wildfires flare

Warning was issued for 583-square-kilometre blaze that has charred Fraser Lake to Fort St. James

Most Read