Watch: Surprised principal darts after bear pops out of school dumpster
NICHOLAS COUNTY, W.Va. - A West Virginia school principal may want to ask for hazard pay after escaping a bear who popped out of the dumpster.
The superintendent of Nicholas County Schools said Principal James Marsh of Zela Elementary noticed a bear roaming around and decided to lock the dumpster as a precaution.
On Monday, Marsh went to go unlock the dumpster when the bear popped out.
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Surveillance footage showed the surprised principal running away from the dumpster as the bear climbed out and ran into the nearby woods.
"I think the bear was as scared of the principal as the principal was the bear," Superintendent Donna Burge-Tetrick told FOX Television Stations.
Burge-Tetrick said after watching the video, it appeared the bear was able to enter and exit the locked dumpster several times.
It also appeared the bear had been sleeping when the principal woke the animal up that morning.
"Principals may need hazard pay in Wild Wonderful West Virginia!" Burge-Tetrick added.
"You put trash in a dumpster, but you don't expect anything to come out!" Marsh told FOX Television Stations. "That was an unexpected surprise!"
"It all happened so fast, and I am glad that nobody got hurt, and I can laugh about it now! For my students' and staff safety though, I would prefer this bear find his meals elsewhere," he continued.
Marsh added that two of his students reminded him he's not supposed to run when you see a bear. Instead, the National Park Service advises people to stay calm and follow these tips.
This story was reported from Los Angeles.