Woman safe after surprise bear attack

A female worker was injured, but is safe, after being attacked by a grizzly bear on Wednesday. The woman was working at an exploration camp east of Wolf Lake, near Swift River.

A female worker was injured, but is safe, after being attacked by a grizzly bear on Wednesday.

The woman was working at an exploration camp east of Wolf Lake, near Swift River.

She was coming out of thick brush and entering an alpine area with her dog, said Ryan Hennings, a senior conservation officer with Environment Yukon who flew in to investigate the attack. The dog normally accompanies the worker when she’s working in the backcountry, said Hennings.

As they entered the area, the dog barked. The worker knew that meant there was a bear in the area. The bear was only 20 metres away. She was accompanied by two cubs.

The sow locked eyes with the worker and then “immediately charged,” said Hennings. The woman responded quickly. She began yelling and unclipping her backpack. She was about to drop to the ground and cover her head with the backpack, but the bear was too fast. It swatted the worker, knocking her to the ground and leaving her with three gashes on her left arm.

The bear then took off with the cubs.

“It really appears to be a surprise encounter,” said Hennings. The bear was protecting her cubs, and its actions were normal for an animal protecting its young, he said.

The woman needed stitches. There were no further injuries, said Hennings.

The bear does not pose any danger to the public, said Hennings. The dog was not injured, and it did not contribute to the attack, he said.

The name of the company the woman was working for is not being released at this time. Environment Yukon continues to investigate the incident.

The Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board is also investigating the incident. Investigations are mandatory when there is an injury at a job site, said board spokesperson Richard Mostyn.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Zoning amendment approved for Black Street property

Bylaw change will allow suite to be built over existing garage despite side, rear setbacks

Yukon borders to reopen July 1, masks required at all Yukon airports

Yukon moves to Phase 2 of reopening on July 1

Runners race Reckless Raven

Nearly 60 Yukoners completed the fourth annual Reckless Raven 50-mile Ultra and… Continue reading

Local gardener asks for return of wagons

Alice Cyr grows vegetables for her condo, but has had two wagons stolen in the last two weeks

YukonU instructor pens letter urging immediate action to address systemic racism

A Yukon First Nations instructor at Yukon University has penned a letter… Continue reading

Ancient lake bed sediments, unusual plants are markers of the Takhini salt flats

It’s one of the Yukon’s best open geological secrets, a well-known but… Continue reading

Yukon University hires director of finance

Yukon University announced in a press release on June 29 that Sheila… Continue reading

Diamond Tooth Gerties to reopen

The Klondike Visitors Association (KVA) announced in a press release on June… Continue reading

Newly-elected Liard First Nation chief accuses YG of interfering with election

Stephen Charlie says YG’s announcement days before election endorsed previous chief

COMMENTARY: Shifting the prevailing narrative of substance use

Blood Ties Four Directions Centre Special to the News Rarely does society… Continue reading

Alexco nearing production at Keno Hill mines

Alexco Resource Corp. is entering the final phase of development at its… Continue reading

Literacy award nomination deadline approaching

Nominations for the 2020 Council of the Federal Literacy Award will remain… Continue reading

City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Most Read