Greensboro, NC -- A bear that had been spotted at Piedmont Triad International Airport was shot and killed by a airport maintenance worker Tuesday morning.
Airport Director Kevin Baker said the bear was killed Tuesday morning after wandering onto a runway and getting aggressive towards workers trying to chase it away.
Baker said the bear was first spotted around midnight by the Mariott Hotel on the airport grounds. The bear was tracked using infrared technology by fire crews. They lost track of it as it headed away from the main roads.
Around 5:45am, the bear was spotted again on the west side on the airport near the General Aviation area. Baker said it got inside the security fence and crossed in front of a plane.
Maintenance workers and airport authorities followed the bear to one of the smaller runways. Baker said a maintenance worker who is trained to deal with wildlife fired a warning shot to chase the bear from the runway.
Those following the bear said it stood on its back legs and showed aggression towards the workers. It was then shot in the chest.
USDA spokeswoman Carol Bannerman confirmed that a biologist that deals with wildlife mitigation was called to the airport after the bear was shot. The biologist recommended the bear be "euthanized" with a second shot.
Bannerman said this was the first report of a bear at PTI since they began the wildlife mitigation program. She also said the FAA and aviation officials have had no reports of bears interfering with flights at any United States airport in recent history.
According to Baker, wildlife officials said there is no way to determine if this was the same bear seen on Battleground Avenue last week. Wildlife officials told him there could be as many as 4-5 bears in the Greensboro area.
WFMY News 2