Black bears are a common sight across the United States; fortunately, they’re usually as afraid of us as we are of them. Typically, black bears in the East are non-aggressive, so much so that Pennsylvania game officials often enter a bear den in winter with a thermometer — and those bears aren’t saying, “Aah!” Bears den under cabins and in large trees in suburban neighborhoods, leading residents to sometimes let their guard down. But as this instance demonstrates, black bears can kill you. Daniel Xu lays out the facts in this OutdoorHub post.

lorna002A horrific bear attack in a Suncor oil sands site [pictured above] in Alberta ended with one employee dead on Wednesday, much to the shock of the company. Spokespeople from the Alberta-based Suncor said that the incident was the first in the company’s history, and was especially surprising because it occurred in a company base camp.

“It’s a big operation, a big facility, so I wouldn’t categorize it as a remote facility,” spokeswoman Sneh Seetal told the CBC.

The attack occurred about 15 miles from Fort McMurray. CTV Calgary reported that a group of seven employees were on site doing electrical work when a large black bear approached the crew and began mauling one of the technicians. The victim, 36-year-old Lorna Weafer [pictured at left], was dragged away from her co-workers and killed.

“People tried to stop it and do everything they could…”

Photos: CNN (top); The Independent (above)

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Joe Byers has more than 1,000 magazine articles in print and is currently a field editor with Whitetail Journal, Predator Xtreme, Whitetails Unlimited, Crossbow Revolution, and African Hunting Journal magazines. He’s spent the last three decades depicting the thrill of the chase and photographing the majesty of all things wild. Byers is a member of the Professional Outdoor Media Association and numerous other professional and conservation organizations.