A man endured a terrifying experience when a cheetah decided to take the backseat in his jeep.
According to the Daily Mail, Britton Hayes was sight-seeing in the wild with a tourist group at the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania when a trio of cheetahs took an interest in them.
Hayes said they were mainly focused on one cheetah that had climbed onto the hood of the jeep and totally missed another one that flanked the vehicle and decided to jump inside.
The Seattle man said everything happened in a flash, adding that it was crucial that they did not drive away quickly or startle the feline creatures as it could have resulted in fatal consequences.
The frightening video shows a strangely calm Hayes remaining still and the cheetah behind him, gnawing at a seat.
Hayes, speaking to Komo News, credited the guide, Alex for keeping everything under control, adding that the guide ensured that they did not make eye contact with the animal and helped them slow down their breathing.
The Seattle tourist said what they did in the jeep made the wild animal realize they were no threat and also made it feel at ease while it explored the vehicle for 10 minutes.
Even when the cheetah left, everyone still paused for about 10 seconds, hardly believing how close they had come with death. Hours later, Britton said it was a relief to laugh about it knowing that nothing bad happened.
Even though Britton Hayes spoke with his mother on the phone about his African adventure, he did not tell her about the close encounter until he returned back to the U.S. He said it would have terrified her hearing it over the phone.
Britton Hayes described the tense moment the cheetah entered the jeep as one of the most worrying moments of his life, adding that he knew predators could easily sense any form of discomfort and did his best to hide it.
“It was one of the scariest moments of my life while it was happening. I felt like I had to clear my mind of any thoughts…they can sense fear and any sort of discomfort…they’ll react accordingly.”
This is not the first time that a cheetah leaped into a jeep. In 2015, another wild cat got all close and personal with a tourist at the Masai Mara game reserve in Kenya, the Telegraph reported.