Car Hits Bear, Triggering Fatal Chain Reaction

Collision with bear in Florida Everglades considered 'rare'
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2014 10:13 AM CST
Car Hits Bear, Triggering Fatal Chain Reaction
In this July 25, 2014, file photo, a black bear is seen at the Maine Wildlife Park in Maine.   (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)

It's not uncommon to spot a black bear roaming the Florida Everglades, but it is uncommon to actually hit one on the road. Three people died last night and eight were injured in a three-car wreck in the Big Cypress Seminole Reservation that began when the first car hit a bear, the Sun-Sentinel reports. The SUV driver's collision with the 300-pound bear set off a chaotic chain reaction. A second car with three people pulled over to help out the SUV passengers—the bear was dead, the SUV was totaled, and passengers were hurt, though the driver herself wasn't injured.

That's when a Mercedes smashed into the second car, killing the three good Samaritans who had stopped to help, CBS Miami reports. The Mercedes passengers and at least three of the SUV's passengers suffered various injuries ranging from serious to critical and were brought to two local hospitals by airlift and ambulance. "I have never heard of a case of a bear being in a traffic accident," a Seminole Police Department spokesman tells CNN. "We have had cases of Florida panthers being involved in car accident[s], but not a Florida black bear." One other person wasn't injured in the accident, which involved a total of 13 people and took place close to 7pm on desolate Snake Road. (Another recent tragic crash involved a 16-year-old driving his family to Disney World.)

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