VENICE, Fla. — Daniel Kaufman says he has lived in Florida his whole life. He says he has seen gators hanging out on the side of the road, but he has never had one crawl underneath his car in the middle of traffic.
Kaufman was in a box truck on his way to work in Sarasota County when it happened.
“As he was approaching – you can kind of hear it in the video – he makes like a big hissing sound,” Kaufman recalled.
Kaufman pulled out his phone and began recording.
“I feel the truck [did] a little shake, and I knew he hit something underneath the exhaust or something,” he said.
He first uploaded the video to Facebook for his friends. He says several people commented asking him to make the post public so they could share it. The video has now been viewed thousands of times.
"Holy cow!" Kaufman can be heard yelling in the video.
He says at first, he didn’t even realize the gator only had three legs.
“I didn’t even notice that when I recorded it until I posted that and someone else wrote a comment saying hey oh my God he’s missing an arm,” explained Kaufman.
Kaufman says it was an exciting experience that he doesn’t think will happen again anytime soon.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says female alligators typically don't get longer than 10 feet, but the males can become much bigger. The state record for a male was 14 feet, 3.5 inches. It was found in Lake Washington in Brevard County.