A “flying bear” killed two Canadians instantly when a freak car accident propelled the black bear through the front windshield of a second vehicle.
A car slammed into the black bear at night on a rural Quebec highway about 25 miles north of Ottawa, the Canadian capital, local police told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
The 440-pound bear was thrown into the air and hit a SUV traveling in the opposite direction, smashing through the SUV’s front windshield and then out the back window.
The driver of the SUV, a 25-year-old Ottawa woman, was pronounced dead at the scene, as was a 40-year-old passenger sitting behind her. But the driver’s boyfriend, sitting in the front passenger seat, escaped with only minor injuries.
The two occupants of the first car that hit the bear were not hurt. The bear was killed on impact.
Police said that the car, a Pontiac Sunfire, was lower to the ground than the SUV and had a more aerodynamic design, and may have propelled the male bear up into the air and into the other lane, the CBC reports.
While deer and moose are regularly seen on roads in rural Canada, and collisions with cars are relatively common, it is unusual for bears to wander onto a highway.
“Obviously, it’s something really rare,” local police spokesman Martin Fournel said. “We don’t see that often, even if we live in the country. Lots of deer, but collisions with a bear and two people died? That’s really rare.”
A local hunting guide told the CBC that it is bear mating season, and warned drivers to be careful because the males go roaming outside their territory to look for female bears in heat.