SAN MATEO -- A reported a possible mountain lion sighting near the San Mateo's Highlands neighborhood on Monday afternoon has police reminding people how to stay safe around the big cats, according to a county alert system.
At 1:20 p.m. Monday, a civilian who was walking near a brush and canyon area on Tower Road in the outskirts of San Mateo spotted what was believed to be a mountain lion near 35 Tower Road, Owen Yoch of the county Office of Emergency Services said.
Polhemus Road, state Highway 92, and Interstate Highway 280 border Tower Road. Immediately to the west of the area where the lion may have been spotted is the sprawling natural landscape surrounding the Crystal Springs Reservoir.
Deputies from the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office responded to the location of the possible sighting and searched for the animal, but did not find any mountain lions, according to Yoch's alert.
With every mountain lion sighting, county emergency responders remind residents of the simple measures they can take to never have an adverse meeting with a mountain lion.
Mountain lions should never be approached if they are seen in the wild, especially if they are eating or with offspring, Yoch said. Most pumas will try to avoid contact with humans.
Not hiking or jogging at the mountain lion hunting times of dawn, dusk, and night, as well as keeping a close watch on children and pets when in the wild, can greatly decrease one's chances of running into a mountain lion, Yoch said.
In the event of a run-in with a cougar, one should not run, Yoch said. Instead, face the animal, make noise, throw rocks, and wave your arms to appear bigger than you are and intimidate the animal, Yoch advised.
More information about coexisting with mountain lions is available at www.keepmewild.org.