B.C. woman attacked by cougar on her own property, airlifted to hospital with serious injuries
May 5 update: Conservation officers say two cougars have been killed following the attack.
VANCOUVER -- A woman has been airlifted to hospital after being attacked by a cougar on her own property, B.C. conservation officers say.
The B.C. Conservation Officer Service reported on social media Tuesday morning that its predator attack team was called out to the Harrison Mills area, west of Agassiz.
"An adult woman was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries after she was attacked by a cougar at her remote property this morning," the BCCOS said in its post.
Authorities said the woman suffered "substantial" bites and scrapes, with injuries to her face, head and arms. She was in stable condition Tuesday night.
Conservation officers said the attack happened on a property about 10 kilometres up a forest services road.
“Why a cougar might attack somebody, we don’t know. We’re going to try and put those pieces of the puzzle together,” Sgt. Todd Hunter said.
While the attack happened in a backcountry area, conservation officers say the remote location is popular with outdoor enthusiasts.
There was also a cougar attack on May 1 that left a dog with minor injuries, Hunter said. It happened on a four-by-four access road in the area. Hunter said they don't know if it’s the same cougar involved in both attacks, but the predator that injured the woman will be destroyed if it is captured.
“We can’t afford to have a cougar in amongst here and there’s a lot of people that use this area, even though it’s a backcountry. We can’t afford to have someone else attacked or injured or worse,” he explained.
Conservation says cougar attacks are rare, but people going into backcountry areas should be cautious.
BC Emergency Health Services said it received a call about Tuesday's attack at about 8:15 a.m. The victim was rushed to Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster for treatment.
"The patient was cared for by paramedics and then transported in serious condition," BCEHS said in a statement to CTV News.