A South African man found out just how dangerous hippos are last week when one rammed the truck he was driving through a national park.
According to The Mirror, Wikus Ceronie was returning home to South Africa after a stint working in Mozambique. Since it was on the way, he decided to take a drive through Kruger National Park in South Africa to enjoy some wildlife. Unfortunately, shortly after he crossed the border into the park, he caught the attention of a cantankerous hippo.
"I was crossing the border from Kruger National Park when I noticed a hippo on the bridge," he told latestsightings.com. "There were people walking around in the nearby vicinity so I automatically assumed this hippo was used to humans. I was quite fascinated by this so I took out my phone to start filming. Suddenly the hippo turned and just started charging... I braced myself as I realized he wasn't going to stop. He hit the bakkie (an Afrikanerism for truck) head on and then tried biting it. I guess after that he decided he had won because he just turned around and left."
The angry hippo completely demolished the front end of Ceronie's white Ford Ranger, but thankfully there were no injuries and he was able to drive the damaged truck home.
"Even though there was damage done to the bonnet of my vehicle and the door couldn't open, I'm grateful there were no serious injuries at the end of day," he said.
Despite their genial appearance hippos are the most dangerous animal in Africa. They're big, aggressive, territorial, immensely strong, and very fast over short distances. Roughly 2,900 people are killed annually in Africa by rampaging hippos, usually when they get between a hippo and something it wants, like deep water or its young. Though hippos aren't the only threat motorists face when driving through nature preserves. Elephants can also damage cars, like this elephant did in a park in Khao Yai National Park in Thailand. Lions are more cunning. They can even open car doors to get to the tasty tourists inside.