ASHLAND, Neb. (WOWT/Gray News) – For a frantic half hour, a 9-year-old with special needs was missing at Wildlife Safari Park.
The nimble climber had scaled a 7-foot fence into an area where the park’s 23 bison live.
That’s when Cass County 911 got a “very frantic” call.
Within minutes, four deputies and a Nebraska state trooper were on the scene.
Rescuing someone from bison isn’t something covered in law enforcement training.
The officers along with park rangers had 40 acres to search for the missing boy. And they had to watch out for the bison, which can weigh 2,000 pounds and run up to 40 mph.
The 9-year-old was in an area used for grazing.
“He had scaled that fence and gotten into the bison enclosure and at the time he was contacted by the deputy, he was within feet of another fence to go into another enclosure.” Lt. Larry Burke with the Cass County Sheriff’s office told WOWT.
Body camera video shows the deputy sprinting across a field to catch up with the boy.
“Hey, stop. What's going on man? Come over here," the deputy said.
At one point during the chase, law enforcement officers lost him.
“There was such a large area and once he got into the foliage of the trees, they lost total contact with him,” Burke said.
But they soon found him again.
“It’s dangerous out here buddy. We have to get out,” the deputy said in the rescue video. “There are big animals out here. It’s dangerous."
The child was not injured and was returned to his guardian.
Officials at Wildlife Safari Park said this is the first time a child has gotten into an animal enclosure there.