It’s a danger our ancestors never had to worry about. Bears falling from the sky, pouncing on our motor vehicles, eating us out of them like cans of sardines. This is the brave new world we live in, and if you drive through forests or any area believed to be inhabited by bears, you need to make sure you’re protected.
“A hard shell roof is a must,” says animal safety expert Blaine Wilson. “Flying Squirrel Bears, also known as grizzle gliders, prefer open rooftops, or canvas that is easy to tear through. However, they can rip through metal, it just takes more time.” Wilson suggests carrying a shotgun that is always ready to fire into the roof if a grizzle glider lands on your vehicle.
Attacks by flying squirrel bears have shot up 85% in the last six months, leading experts to believe this recently discovered species is reproducing rapidly. “Nobody knows where they came from or how they evolved skin flaps so fast,” biologist Terrance Umlaut of Redlands College said. The creatures have been known to pounce on cars from overpasses, road signs, tree limbs, and rooftops. They can glide silently so that you don’t even notice they are near until they are right on top of you. Last month an entire bus was attacked by a pack of gliders.
Authorities suggest leaving convertibles, motorcycles and any vehicle with an open top in the garage for now. Bear safety accessory manufacturer GrizzBlock has released a rooftop spike mount that can impale bears who want to land on your car. If you find yourself in a situation with a bear on your roof, experts suggest swerving wildly back and forth and firing into the roof with a shotgun. If this doesn’t work, drive off the nearest cliff. “Better to die a Thelma and Louise death than to go out Revenant style,” Wilson opined.
For more information on which vehicles can best stand up to squirrel bears, check out the new “Bear Ambush Ratings” recently released by Consumer Reports.