People who live near bears also have a bad habit of not locking cars, somehow managing to forget that bears can open door handles, get stuck inside of cars, then, angry and confused, destroy said cars. Perhaps this is not surprising for people who choose to live near confused bears that can open car doors.
If bears had nightmares, they would probably be about getting stuck in cars that they’ve climbed into. Some bears poop in fear once in the car, others nervously chew on steering wheels and need a calm talking to while they’re freed, but all bears trash the car. Think of it as bear hoonage. (Send it straight to an insurance auction, right?)
The most recent bear to get a set of wheels was in Canton, Connecticut, when NBC Connecticut reports Linda Morad left her car open while housesitting for a friend. Morad didn’t say whether she left the door open or just left the Subaru Outback unlocked, but the bear apparently climbed in from the driver’s side before getting stuck and reacting as bears do.
Morad noticed her car lights going on and off, but couldn’t see what was going on through the tinted windows. She called 911 while walking toward the car, describing what she heard. From NBC Connecticut:
Officers showed up in minutes.
“And from inside the house, I saw them open the door and let the bear out – a full-sized bear,” Morad said.
Then, police warned her about the condition of her car.
“They said, ‘You’re not going to believe what your car looks like.’ I thought, ‘Well, I’ll clean it tomorrow’” Morad said.
Then she saw the damage. The dashboard, the leather seats, the trunk and the hatchback were all torn to pieces.
“I don’t think this could be cleaned!” Morad said.
Morad called the bear break-in a fluke, saying it’s rare “like getting struck by lightning or hitting the lottery.” There’s a locality in Colorado where officials say “two or three bears get stuck in cars each week in the area,” so, uh, either that place is really bear happy or bear break-ins really aren’t that rare. I’m not planning to head to bear territory and leave a car unlocked to find out.
Either way, NBC Connecticut said Morad’s borrowing a car while she waits to hear back from her insurance agency, and that she’s making sure to lock the doors on this one.
That’s probably a good idea.