Rossland, B.C. mother and kids hide in their room as bear trashes their house

No one likes uninvited guests, especially an uninvited bear in your living room.

Kate Rice heard some banging in her living room in Rossland, B.C., at 1:00 a.m. last Saturday.

She did not think much of it, as her nine-year-old daughter was having a sleepover with a friend in the room next door.

When the banging intensified, she realized a bear was in her living room.

Rice ran and barricaded herself in her daughter’s room with her dog and the two children. She then called police.

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“He was in the room beside us that he tore up. We could hear him breathing on the door that we were holding. It was quite the incident,” Rice said.

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In a statement, the RCMP said officers had to force open the front door which “freed the bear that ended up trapped inside the residence.”

Luckily, no one was injured. But the way the bear got into the house remains a mystery.

“We don’t know where it came in, but all the doors were locked … I don’t have any big windows that a bear could fit through,” Rice said.

Rice describes the damage to her house as “a total disaster.” She said plants were flipped upside down and ripped up basement flooring and drywall. The bear, she added, peed on the floor. Thankfully, Rice said all costs would fall under insurance.

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“It was just really overwhelming to see all the damage. And then also just taking into account what could have happened, because the kids had asked to sleep downstairs prior, but I’d said no,” Rice explained.

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RCMP Sgt. Mike Wicentowich said in a statement that the family “did the right thing at the right time” and asked people to secure potential food sources to “help prevent incidents like this from occurring.”

For Lisa Lopez, program manager for WildsafeBC, these circumstances do not happen very often.

“[This] indicates that this bear is very comfortable in the community and in these residential spaces,” she said.

Lopez also advises citizens to attend anything with strong scents near their house, including pet food, bird feeders and barbecue grills.

The Rice family is now in Edmonton and are anticipating coming back to Rossland sometime next week, to deal with house restorations with the help of their friends and family and the Rossland community.

“I’m just happy everyone’s okay. We have two cats and a dog also. No one was injured. It’s pretty amazing that way,” Rice said.

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