When Safari Goes Wrong
Safari is an adventure itself, but when it goes wrong, you definitely know it will be insane and crazy as one of those Indiana Jones films.
1 The couple who was saved from an elephant attack by saying ‘sorry’
In September 2014, a young couple survived being gored and trampled by elephants – and they say it was all down to the power of the word ‘sorry’. Hayley Simleit, 28 and Dylan Taylor, 27, were walking in the bush near the safari lodge they help run in Chirundu, western Zimbabwe, when they were suddenly attacked by a young bull elephant. The elephant straddled the already injured Ms. Simleit and bent its head down in an attempt to gore her. Her fiancé leapt on its head in an amazing act of bravery, but the animal then turned on him. Gored in the neck, with six fractured ribs and convinced he was about to die, Mr. Taylor shouted over and over again: “Sorry.” A whole herd of up to 12 elephants gathered and without knowing why, Mr. Taylor started to speak to the elephants. Just one word – sorry – repeated again and again. That was when the tempo of the attack changed. The elephants tossed him on to an anthill. People told them afterwards that “if an elephant wants to kill you, it will.”
2 The elephant who tossed a British tourist’s car during safari
Just a year ago, a British woman was injured after a male elephant charged her car in Kruger National Park in South Africa. Video taken from a following vehicle shows the animal facing off with the car for a few moments before flipping it several times with its tusks.
William Mabasa, general manager at Kruger, said one of the elephant’s tusks stabbed Ms. Brooks in the thigh. A South African man she was with was reported to have suffered less serious injuries. The elephant, which is reported to have shown aggressive behavior before, was put down for posing a threat to tourists.
3 The impala that found refuge from cheetah by leaping into tourists’ car
In 2013, a poor impala was captured on camera sensationally escaping two cheetahs – by leaping into a car full of tourists. The terrified animal saved itself when an unexpected window of opportunity appeared.
Samantha Pittendrigh, 20, filmed as the impala leapt through the passenger-side window of a Toyota Prado. In the confusion, one of the passengers managed to open a door and the impala is seen just seconds later trotting across the road to freedom in full view of the cheetahs, who abandon the chase.
The footage was captured in Kruger National Park, South Africa, where park rules state you must stay inside your vehicle at all times.
4 Elephant fell in love with a car that was passing through the Safari park
The elephant’s testosterone increased 60 times greater than normal – so the animal decided to get closely acquainted with a parked hatchback.
The two terrified people of this VW Polo found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time as a giant elephant stooped down to rub itself against the vehicle’s roof and bonnet. The incredible images were taken by Armand Grobler, 21, a field guide and lodge manager, in Pilanesburg National Park in South Africa in August 2014.
After the elephant was finished the car was left with four blown tires and a broken chassis. Elephants frequently use logs, small trees and rocks to relieve an itch or remove parasites – but with the car so close to hand, it was a chance too good to pass up.
5 The woman who had a terrible posing in front of rhinos
On the photo you can see Chantal Beyer and her husband just a few feet away from two white rhinos, which on average weigh 1800-2300 kilograms. Apparently taking the photo so close to the animals wasn’t the smartest idea, because once the couple took the picture, the rhinos attacked them. The rhino’s horn penetrated Beyer’s chest from behind, causing a collapsed lung and broken ribs.
Apparently the park owner told the visitors that it was safe to get out of the safari vehicle to take photos, and he even used food to coax the rhinos closer. He also reportedly suggested the woman to “stand just a little bit closer” to the massive bull rhino, moments before it attacked. The woman was immediately taken to the hospital where she stayed for a recovery.