According to police, the first official black bear sightings of the season were reported this past weekend.
Saturday morning, a bear was struck on the Dulles Toll Road, police said, and later that day, a bear was reportedly spotted in the backyard of a residence in the 1600 block of Fremont Lane. Officials are unsure if this is the same bear that was struck earlier in the day.
Officials say that bears are naturally fearful of people and would generally rather flee than encounter humans, but they recommend that residents take precautions to avoid attracting the animals by not storing trash outdoors, taking garbage to the curb the morning of pickup rather than the night before, and considering installing electric fences around gardens and dumpsters.
Bear sightings are not uncommon for this time of year, and Animal Control advised they will not remove any bears unless they are sick, injured or seem to pose a threat to public safety.