Bears wake up hungry and may be more visible and aggressive than usual as they search for food. Normal seasonal food sources are not yet available. Do your part to eliminate bear attractants – ensure you use the appropriate bins for disposal of all waste materials within your respective site.
Remember, a FED animal is a DEAD animal.
If you encounter a bear and it doesn’t see you or acknowledge your presence, back away and do not disrupt it. If the bear sees you:
Speak calmly – i.e. “Whoa Bear. I’m backing away bear.”
Back away slowly. Do not turn and run. If the bear sees you and starts moving towards you:
- Make yourself look as large as possible by waving arms or holding up a jacket.
- Make as much noise as possible to scare the bear away by clapping hands, using horns or whistles.
- Do not stare directly in their eyes. In a worst-case scenario, you should fight back with a black bear.
- Playing dead is only recommended for grizzly bears and brown bears.
- Do not climb trees.
Black bears are “excellent tree climbers.” Again, Do not climb a tree (Black bears can climb trees easily). If the bear is unaware of you:
Give the bear time to leave or calmly leave the area and go back the way you came, don’t run.
If a bear approaches you or you surprise it:
Stand your ground, yell and wave your arms to make yourself look bigger. Throw objects; blow a
whistle or an air horn. If you are carrying bear spray, get it in hand, point the nozzle away from you and check the wind direction to make sure the spray will not blow back at you (Remember, you need to be within seven metres of the bear for it to be effective).
Check for wildlife activity in the proposed work area whenever possible (e.g. contact local provincial fish and wildlife offices). Ensure you have a communication device (e.g., cell phone, radio or satellite phone) that works in the area Include wildlife hazards and control measures as part of the pre‐job hazard assessment process. Store food and garbage in airtight containers.
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