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bear shot

A bear’s ultimately fatal encounter with a truck last week on Highway 99 was not made any easier by passing motorists honking and yelling, RCMP say. The accident occurred just south of Function Junction on July 9, at about 2:45 in the afternoon. A large truck struck a female adult bear, sending it flying off the road. The truck driver stopped and reported the collision to RCMP, and then continued on his route. RCMP found the bear severely injured, but still alive, in a ditch by the side of the road. "The bear had flown a ways. There was a scuff mark in the gravel at the side of the highway, a blood streak, and then the bear had hit the concrete abutment," Cpl. Mike Shannon said. It was going to be some time before conservation officers would get to the scene; RCMP decided the humane thing to do was to shoot the bear. "Shooting bears is a last resort," Shannon said. "I felt bad for the bear." While the bear was out of sight of passing motorists, RCMP and their rifles were clearly visible. At this point, while RCMP were making their decision, passing drivers started honking and yelling at the officers, probably believing that a healthy bear was going to be shot. Each time they honked the bear became more frightened and tried to get away. "The honking was really causing problems," Shannon said. "Every time the bear moved it caused pain and was injuring itself further. "I wish people knew what was going on."

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