In the night, a pair of elephants and two offspring attacked a transit bus on National Highway #2. There were two serious injuries and significant property damage, reports the pro-government daily Bring Back the Union.
The attack took place in the night of Monday to Tuesday near the intersection Lalara. The bus belonged to the company Major Coaster brand with twenty occupants; it was traveling by night in the direction Libreville–Oyem. According to testimony gathered by the newspaper, toward 2:00 a.m., the driver and passengers saw, on a turn, an elephant of evil spirits grazing, his trunk facing the forest. The driver did not stop but tried to move on.
The elephant suddenly turned and charged the vehicle. The driver tried to veer to the left. He received another charge by the female who was there with her two offspring. The driver and his bus, unbalanced by the power of the charges, were propelled off of the roadway, where the bus halted. Two serious injuries were reported and the bus was seriously damaged. The elephants quietly returned to the forest, their health status unknown. The seriously injured were evacuated by other travelers and taken to Oyem’s health center.
This kind of accident is rare. Rather, the Gabonese are accustomed to living with collisions between trains and elephants.
Gabon is considered one of the largest global reserves of forest elephants. These giants of the forest are unfortunately victims of poaching for their ivory. Official statistics indicate that the country has lost about 11,000 elephants between 2004 and 2012.