In a harrowing incident, an angry elephant charged at a pick-up truck, tearing off the bonnet with its tusks and shoving the 2.5-tonne vehicle and its fuel-filled trailer backward.
The driver, 47-year-old Norman Nukeri, was petrified during the encounter in Hoedspruit, South Africa.
Nukeri, a fuel supply driver, was going to a client’s lodge on June 1 when he stopped his Toyota truck to let a family of wild African elephants cross the dirt road.
Suddenly, one of the elephants charged at his vehicle, causing Nukeri to fear for his life.
Captured on a dashcam, the footage reveals the elephant advancing towards the truck while Nukeri bangs on his door to deter the animal.
Initially, the elephant seems to retreat but quickly returns and charges at the vehicle head-on. The bonnet crumples under the impact as the elephant pushes the truck and its fuel-filled trailer backward.
After the incident, a shaken Nukeri said he didn’t feel safe until rangers from the Klasirie Private Nature Reserve arrived on the scene.
Reflecting on the experience, Nukeri said, “I thought it could have been a life-threatening situation.
I was scared that he would push the truck into the river. I didn’t know what was going to happen to me. I feared for my life.”
The encounter left significant damage to the vehicle’s bonnet and rear, which Nathan Traut, marketing and operations manager of Bosbok Gas, estimates will cost around £750 to repair.
Traut expressed relief that Nukeri, their “top driver,” survived the ordeal unharmed.
The company director even treated Nukeri to drinks to help him relax after the frightening experience.
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