We have previously discussed the importance of watching out for deer crossing the road while driving, but in states like Minnesota and Colorado deer aren’t the only animals drivers need to be wary of. Chris Jordan and his battered Volkswagen Jetta will tell you as much. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Jordan hit a full grown black bear Monday night while driving back to his Lino Lakes home from a Minnesota Twins game. Jordan and his two passengers walked away unscathed, but the Jetta wasn’t as fortunate.
“I’ve hit deer before with my car, but a bear? My car didn’t fare too well,” Jordan said.
The bear didn’t fare too well either. Jordan was driving around 60 miles per hour just after 10:30 PM when the bear appeared out of nowhere running across the pitch black road. Having no time to swerve, Jordan used his front left bumper to dispatch the 200-pound bear to its final resting place in a nearby ditch. The Jetta was totaled, but Jordan was able to find a nearby police officer to report the incident. The officer later found the lifeless bear in the ditch just off the road.
“[Jordan] flagged me down and [the car] was smoking. He said he hit a bear, and I said, ‘You aren’t kidding you hit a bear,’ ” Sgt. Mike Rumposa said. “No one in the vehicle was hurt, and the bear didn’t suffer….That’s a good thing all around, I guess.”
Jordan said there had been whispers of black bears spotted in the area recently, and now he knows firsthand to keep an eye out for more than just deer while on the road.
Oddly enough, Jordan isn’t the only driver to make recent headlines for hitting a bear. The famous “falling bear” from the University of Colorado-Boulder was struck and killed by two motorists outside of the college town last week. Days before the accident, the bear had been tranquilized after climbing a campus tree and his drowsy descent became an instant web sensation.
Colorado officials relocated the bear to the mountains after the fall, but it ventured back into town days later in search of food. Both vehicles that struck the bear were totaled and one motorist was treated for minor injuries.
All three motorists were fortunate to avoid serious injuries in their collisions with black bears. Many drivers that collide with large animals aren’t as lucky. It’s important to remember that these accidents can often be avoided by keeping both eyes on the road at all times and proceeding with caution through dark, wooded stretches of road where animals are known to cross. If an accident is unavoidable, it’s better to hit the animal than swerve out of the way, as swerving can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles and put other drivers at risk.
If you or a loved one has been severely injured from a catastrophic automobile accident, please contact our office immediately for a free consultation. You can also learn more about GoldenbergLaw, PLLC by visiting our website or our auto safety resource center.
For more information on the two recent bear-car collisions, please visit the following links.