Nationwide Insurance, I Just Hit a Bear

Why Does A Brown Bear Cross The Highway At Night?

Ok, so I have a F-150 and not a SUV. And no, this didn’t happen to me but after some of the calls I had to make over the years to  Nationwide and the miles I have to drive through the virtual wilderness, I may just roll up on a bear. However, my night vision sucks, and as a rule I try not to drive at night. I am in Philly for training for my new position this week, and I take this from a conversation I had with my new colleague, Lara. Lara was returning home with her daughter in a darkened set of Pennsylvania Highway when in the circle of her headlights appeared of brown bear crossing the road. It was too late to break and she hit the bear head on.

(Fictitious conversation between Lara and Nationwide claim agent, Jocelyn)


Hello this is Nationwide Claims. You are speaking to Jocelyn, how may I help you?


I have called to report that I have been in an accident.


Are you safe and are you and your vehicle out of direct line of traffic.


No.  But I’m scared to get out of my car.


Why is that?


Well I just hit a bear and I don’t know if he’s actually dead or just playing dead.


(Stunned Silence)

 I have been a customer with Nationwide for actually 27 years.  I have reached the pinnacle of customers the disappearing deductible club. But I have made some laugh track worthy calls to the claims center over those past two decades. For example, I had called and said, “Help someone stole my heating unit.”  This was during the height of the copper coil jacking days in North Carolina.  I remember the customer service agent  laughing for good 10 minutes before she took the rest of that claim, she said she kept picturing someone running down the street with my big bulking forced heat unit on the shoulder.  Then another time  I called not only to put my new Jeep Cherokee on my policy but also report a collision because I fell asleep behind the wheel and  I slid off the road in South Carolina into a tree causing about 15 G’s worth of  damage to a car that I just had bought and giving my dog Fred long-term PTSD. Not a scratch to me just made my dog refuse to ever get in the car with me.

But this call is becoming more common place as we encroach upon natural habitat.  But also too in certain multiple funny questions that come to mind. My night vision is absolutely horrible and I don’t go out after dark most days and Lara’s night vision is worse than mine. Number two, I know Lara and I don’t know if she was chatting with her  kids or if she was not scanning. But I can imagine seeing this bear up ahead, and it doesn’t compute that this can’t be true or this can’t be real. I could only imagine how dark it was in the back woods in Pennsylvania because I don’t think they have a lot of lights back there. But why was Yogi out crossing the road? It was the  middle December,  wasn’t  he supposed to be hibernating or was he sleepwalking?

This was unique in that they sent a wrecker because due to the impact her car wasn’t drivable as well as  a game warden because the bear was over almost 500 pounds.  Mortgage companies make you have water and wind insurance now I wonder if they are going to demand you have BEAR or other large wild animal insurance as we encroach and drive through wild life habitats?

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