Defense Against Crime

09/09/2016

Do I need to carry pepper spray when I’m hiking or camping?

bear-spray-2When you think about dangerous animals in the great outdoors, we think about most about bears and mountain lions encounters. Yes, a wild animal attack can happen in many areas of the United States. But mountain lions and cougars. Here are the facts that we have researched:

Mountain lion attacks on people have increased dramatically since 1986. For example, in California, there were two fatal attacks in 1890 and 1909, and then no further attacks for 77 years, until 1986. From 1986 through 1995, ten verified attacks occurred, an average rate of one per year. That average rate has continued through 1999. Attacks are now numerous enough that there is a support group for attack victims. As the habitat of people reach into their habitats we will see more.

Fatal bear attacks in North America have occurred in a variety of settings. There have been several in the bears’ wilderness habitats involving hikers, hunters, and campers. Brown bear incidents have occurred in their native range spanning Alaska, Northern and Western Canada, and portions of the Rocky Mountains in the United States. The locations of black bear wilderness fatal attacks reflect their wider range: all Canadian Provinces except the Atlantic Provinces and several major mountainous areas in the United States.

In the 2000s, there have been 27 fatal incidences so far in North America, resulting in 29 deaths. 15 were in Canada, three were in Alaska, two were in Tennessee, and single fatal attacks happened in New York, New Mexico, California, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Utah and Montana. 17 of those attacks were perpetrated by black bears, and 10 by grizzlies.

 

, This is a good reason to carry bear pepper spray whebear-spray-art-w-distancen hiking or camping.

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