Lion Jumps in Car and Mauls Man on Safari

Leah Ginsberg
·Lead Editor

Brendan Smith in better times (Brendan Smith/Facebook)

Australian tourist Brendan Smith got a lot more up close and personal with the wildlife than he expected while on safari in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Just a day and a half after arriving in Joburg, Smith was on a safari when a lion jumped through the window of his car and started mauling his legs.

Though it must have been a terrifying experience, somehow Smith has had a sense of humor about it: “No later than 36 hours after touching down in Africa, I find myself in hospital after a lion jumped through the car window and decided to go to town on my legs,” he wrote on Facebook. “Pretty full-on but am alive, with insurance coming to the party and an influx of curious Africans wanting to see ‘the lion man.’”

You don’t want to come face to face with this guy. (Thinkstock)

Smith also posted pictures of his rather severe-looking injuries on his Facebook page.

It’s unclear what caused the lion to approach the car and attack Smith. Basic safari safety rules include staying in the car, refraining from sticking anything out of the car, and keeping your windows rolled up. In some safari parks and areas, animals can become habituated to seeing vehicles and are less afraid to approach them. Just recently a shocking video emerged of a lion on safari opening a tourist’s car door with her mouth. No one was injured in that incident.

Related: You Have to See It to Believe It: Lion Shocks Tourists By Opening Car Door on Safari

Though he’s still recovering, Smith is now out of the hospital and says he’s feeling good, counting his blessings and making “small but satisfying steps of rehab.” Adds the Aussie, “When the swelling and bruises have gone down I’ll head back home and be dancing up a storm in no time.”

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