Hippos: They’re cute, chubby giants, but you do not want to get on their bad side.
A South African motorist learned this the hard way when a hippo went head-to-head with his pickup truck near a bridge.
Video capturing his jolting encounter shows the bathtub-sized animal charging toward the front of the man’s pickup, crushing it like tin foil.
“I braced myself as I realized he wasn’t going to stop,” driver Wilus Ceronie, 26, told Latest Sightings of Friday’s narrow escape. “He hit the [truck] head on and then tried biting it. I guess after that he decided he had won because he just turned around and left.”
Ceronie said he had finished his first day working in Mozambique when he had the unlucky run-in driving back to South Africa.
He said he thought the hippo may be docile with people, since he saw a few walking around outside his truck, and paused to film the creature on his cellphone.
Hippos, while adorable looking, are considered one of the most dangerous and aggressive mammals in the world. In addition to having massive teeth that can reach 20 inches in length, they’re capable of charging up to 14 mph on land and are known to kill people if they feel provoked or threatened, according to the San Diego Zoo.
Ceronie appeared to understand exactly what a close call he had.
“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 told Latest Sightings.