A Romanian official says a policeman has died after being maimed by a bear in a forest in Transylvania.

Tiberiu Postoaca, the director of the ambulance service in Covasna county, says Monday the 30-year-old died after suffering a heart attack while being transported to the hospital.

The policeman and a friend were walking through the woods Sunday when the bear mauled him. The man's friend ran and called for help.

Laszlo Bela, chairman of a hunters' association, says most bears are hibernating now. He believes the bear might have attacked to protect cubs in a nearby den.

Bela says the number of bears in the area has increased to 600 after strict hunting regulations were imposed. Hunters are allowed to kill 20 bears annually in Covasna, in western Romania.