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Mother bear, 3 cubs killed near airport runway

Published October 30. 2014 08:09AM

AVOCA (AP) – Authorities say a family of black bears was shot and killed near a northeastern Pennsylvania airport earlier this month because they posed a threat to incoming flights and customers.

The Pennsylvania Game Commission says a mother bear and her three 2-year-old cubs crossed the perimeter fence of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Airport on Oct. 20.

Airport director Barry Centini said the animals were spotted by a helicopter pilot, and maintenance personnel killed them a few hundred yards east of the approach to Runway 4.

Centini called the action "unfortunate" but stressed the need to protect pilots and passengers.

Bill Williams of the commission's northeast region said the airport has federal and game commission permits to shoot animals posing a safety risk, and his agency was notified about the action the same day.

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