Woman attacked by bear at US campsite
Friday 30 July 2010
A Canadian woman who was attacked by a bear in the middle of the night at a busy US campsite was bitten on her arm and leg before she instinctively played dead. She said she adopted the tactic in the hope the animal would leave her alone.
At least one bear rampaged through the campsite near Yellowstone National Park on Wednesday, killing one man and injuring Deb Freele of Ontario and another man.
Appearing on television from a Wyoming hospital, Ms Freele said she woke up just before the bear bit her arm. "I screamed, he bit harder, I screamed harder, he continued to bite," she recalled.
Desperate to survive, Ms Freele realised the screaming wasn't working. "I told myself, play dead," she said. "I went totally limp. As soon as I went limp, I could feel his jaws get loose and then he let me go."
She said the bear was silent. "I felt like he was hunting me."
A frequent camper, Ms Freele said that she was prepared to go camping again hours after the attack, though she acknowledged it will take time to recover, both physically and emotionally. She suffered severe lacerations and crushed bones from bites on her arms. The male survivor, thought to be a teenager, suffered puncture wounds on his calf. The names and ages of the male victims have not been released.
Late on Wednesday, wildlife officials were still trying to capture the bear or bears with baited traps.
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