Tourist Mauled After Rolling Down Window to Take Selfie With Bear

“I thought he wanted to be friends,” the victim's friend said of the wild bear

<p>Getty</p> brown bear -- stock image


brown bear -- stock image

A Scottish tourist is thankful to be alive after a close encounter with a wild bear sent her to the emergency room.

Moira Gallacher, 72, had been vacationing in Romania with her friend Charmian Widdowson when the women decided to go for a drive through the Carpathian Mountains.

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During the outing, the women came across a couple of brown bears and did their best to get a photo of the wildlife.

“What happened was the bear came up to the window at my friend’s side, and no problem. It let us take a picture and went away,” Gallacher said in a video shared by Scottish outlet STV News on X (formerly Twitter) Tuesday, April 23. “But I didn’t get a proper picture, so we went back and it was at my side.”



In the clip, the injured Gallacher was seen being rolled away in a stretcher.

“I’m not going to be on STV News,” she said with a laugh.

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In addition to the brief clip shared online, both women detailed the incident to the news channel.

“We saw these bears – a mummy bear, and a baby – they were gorgeous,” Widdowson said. 

“But they weren’t gorgeous. The mummy bear was hungry, and thought my friend was going to be lunch,” she added.

<p>Getty</p> Gurney in hospital room -- stock image


Gurney in hospital room -- stock image

They shared a video of their day prior to the mauling. A winding road with tall and dense trees was seen in the footage before the friends took photos of the two bears. 

Related: American Woman Killed by Lion Attack in South African Safari Park

Recounting the moments before the mauling, Widdowson said she parked her car to be able to get a better photo.

“I thought he wanted to be friends,” she said. “The bear came and wanted to get into the car, but he started getting into the car and bit my friend.”

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<p>Getty</p> brown bear -- stock image


brown bear -- stock image

The women think that their conversation about food may have triggered the attack.

“My friend said, let’s get something to eat,” Widdowson told the news station. “No, you are not allowed to give food. Absolutely nothing, nothing, nothing. And I think he heard it and decided he had to eat my friend instead.”

Widdowson credits Gallacher’s survival to a particular piece of clothing.

“She was wearing a thick Marks & Spencer jacket and the poor bear got more jacket than arm,” Widdowson told the outlet.

The survivor realizes the outcome could have been much worse.

“I’m a very lucky woman,” Gallacher said.

<p>Getty</p> ambulance -- stock image


ambulance -- stock image

“I was wearing a padded jacket and a top and another top – that’s what saved my arm. I’ve been very, very lucky,” she continued. “The shock has set in today, but everything’s ok now.”

Curtea de Argeș Municipal Hospital manager Andreea Gheordunescu told the outlet "a foreign patient" was being treated "on her right hand" after being bitten by a bear.

STV News notes that the largest population of European brown bears can be found in Romania. The animals, who tend to hibernate in the winter and emerge in March and April, can reach speeds of 30 mph and stand at 7 ft tall.

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