SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – A sea lion stopped traffic on Highway 101 near the San Francisco International Airport Tuesday morning.
The CHP says the marine mammal appeared on the right hand side of the highway and that drivers had stopped to try to prevent the animal from going into lanes of traffic.
Around 8:35 a.m., officers learned that the animal was trapped in between the highway’s shoulder and a guardrail just south of South Airport Boulevard, CHP officer Bert Diaz said.
According to Diaz, it appeared healthy and uninjured. CHP officers worked with the Marine Mammal Center to safely rescue it and then brought it to the Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA.
According to the Marine Mammal Center, the sea lion is currently in the process of being transferred to the center’s hospital in the Marin Headlands where it will receive rehabilitative care.
On Wednesday, veterinary experts with the center plan to perform a full entrance exam on the sea lion to determine its age, sex and overall condition.
Marine Mammal Center officials said the rescue was made possible not only with help from the CHP but also because of members of the public who called the center’s 24-hour rescue hotline at (415) 289-SEAL to report the incident.
“Today’s rescue of a California sea lion is a great example of the importance of members of the public giving our rescue hotline a call to report a marine mammal in distress,” Dr. Cara Field, a veterinarian with the center, said in a statement. “This action allows our expert veterinary team to provide immediate supportive care and give this sea lion a second chance at life.”