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One sent to hospital after bear attack at northwestern Ont. provincial park


One person was taken to hospital after a bear attack inside a camp in a remote area of a northwestern Ontario provincial park Wednesday morning.

Emergency crews were called to Wabakimi Provincial Park, north of Thunder Bay, around 8:30 a.m. June 12, Ontario Provincial Police said in a news release.

"The bear was gone upon arrival," OPP said.

"Officers responded to the area and located one individual with non-life-threatening injuries. The individual was transported to hospital by EMS (emergency medical services) to be treated for their injuries."

Wabakimi is the second largest provincial park in Ontario, is known for its remote backcountry with around 500 campsites and woodland caribou.

"Located on the Canadian Shield in the Boreal forest, the park encompasses 10,000 lakes and a network of rivers and streams that provide 1,500 km of paddling routes," the park's website said.

"Visitors can enter the park by train, floatplane, or canoe."

The Ontario Bear Wise program advises to fight back with everything you have if a bear attacks.

"Do not play dead unless you are sure you are being attacked by a mother bear defending her cubs," the ministry said.

Using bear spray also works before leaving the area.

If you encounter a bear, it is advised to stop, remain calm and do not panic.

Here are some other tips to do when you encounter a bear:

  • Slowly back away while keeping the bear in sight and wait for it to leave.
  • Throw objects, wave your arms and make noise with a whistle, air horn or yelling if the bear does not leave.
  • Prepare to use bear spray.
  • Get inside a building or vehicle, if you are nearby, as a precaution.
  • Drop any food you may be carrying and slowly move away.
  • Leave a bear alone if it is in a tree. Leave the area. The bear will come down when it feels safe.

The ministry said do not:

  • Run, climb a tree or swim.
  • Kneel down.
  • Make direct eye contact.
  • Approach the bear to get a better look.
  • Attempt to feed a bear.
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