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Elephant attacks bakkie: 16 tips for drivers to avoid animal attacks

2016-07-07 14:51

ANGRY ELLY: An elephant at a Mozambique game reserve wrecked a bakkie. Follow our guide to avoid finding yourself in a similar situation. Image: Youtube

Cape Town - A video posted on YouTube captured a motorist's horror ordeal - an elephant in the Maputo Game Reserve in Mozambique charging a bakkie. 

The video has since gone viral and shows the enraged animal flipping a double-cab bakkie. The brief video shows the elephant charging towards the car, while occupants of the bakkie remain inside. 

Bakkie flipped

The bakkie is flipped onto its roof and the driver can be heard groaning as the animal shows no restraint in assaulting the vehicle.  

Watch the incident below: 

Have you witnessed an animal attacking a vehicle? Have you experienced an animal attacking your ride? Email us.

#ShockWildlifeTruths offers positive guidelines on app use in SANParks

When in the wild we need to respect nature, wildlife and vegetation. It is not only our safety we should be concerned about, but also that of the wildlife we are observing!

Safe driving tips for dealing when dealing with wildlife

1. Smoking should be restricted to designated areas only, and not allowed in the veld.
2. The dry African bush ignites very easily, and a flash fire can kill animals. 
3. When driving at night, early morning, or at dusk, caution needs to be taken as this is when animal activity is high and the chance of animal/vehicle impact is the greatest. 
4. Try to slow down, especially after dark. Many animals become victims because people drive too fast to avoid hitting them.
5. Scan the road as you drive, watching the edges for wildlife. Young animals, in particular, do not recognize cars as a threat.
6. Wild animals are unpredictable and do not understand that the approaching lights on a vehicle means danger. They can be scared and become erratic and dart straight out in front of the motorist. 
7. The best way to avoid a collision with a wild animal is to anticipate that you will find one around the next corner so that you are able to react appropriately in the situation.
8. Remember that where there is one animal crossing, there may be more, young animals following their mother or male animals pursuing a mate.
9. At viewpoints, hides and camps, wildlife is more familiar with people and less intimidated by your presence. 
10. Never attempt to feed or approach any wild animal on foot, respect their fear of humans.
11. Never tease or corner wild animals - this may cause an unpredictable response and a potentially dangerous reaction. 
12. Respect your driver/guide's judgment about proximity to lions, cheetahs and leopards. Don't insist that he take the vehicle closer so you can get a better photograph. A vehicle driven too close can hinder a hunt or cause animals to abandon a hard-earned meal. 
13. Never throw litter from your car! Litter tossed on the ground can choke or poison animals, and birds.

Read: Guide to safety and driving on safari 

Arrive Alive editor, Johan Jonck, said: “With SA being such a prominent game viewing destination, we put quite a bit of research into compiling guidelines on how to drive when on safari and specifically in the nature reserve.

“It’s extremely important to remember that you as a game viewer are the outsider; you are in their (the animals) territory and you need to be respectful to nature and the animals in that domain.

WATCH: Elephant destroys vehicle with tourist in Maputo Game Reserve

“As a first guide we need to "listen local" and inquire from the guides and rangers where it is safe to drive and where we should not go .. they will have first hand knowledge of trouble spots or trouble animals..

There are very important tips, such as:

1. Observe animals silently and with a minimum of disturbance to their natural activities. Loud talking on game drives can frighten the animals.

2. Never attempt to attract an animal's attention. Don't imitate animal sounds, clap your hands, pound the vehicle or throw objects from the vehicle.

3. Do not be confrontational and hoot at vehicles... when a big animal such as an elephant approaches rather slowly move away... “The beauty of the wild is that it is still the wild - meaning it’s unpredictable. Be informed and be prepared.Understanding the rules of conduct and appropriate behaviour is an important part of safari safety. With awareness and cooperation, you will be ready for a safe and memorable journey!


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