Teacher OK after crashing into bear on a bicycle

A middle school teacher suffered some bruising and a big scratch on his back after he struck a bear while riding his bicycle to school.

Jim Litz, has a broken bike helmet and bruised ribs to show for the 25-mile-per-hour collision with a 300 hundred pound black bear Monday morning, Sept. 8, 2008 while riding his bike to work in Missoula, Mont. (AP Photo/The Missoulian, Michael Gallacher)

MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) -- A middle school teacher suffered some bruising and a big scratch on his back after he struck a bear while riding his bicycle to school.

Jim Litz said he was traveling about 25 mph Monday morning when he came upon a rise and spotted a black bear about 10 feet in front of him. He didn't have time to stop and T-boned the bruin.

He tumbled over the handlebars, his helmet hit the bear's back and the two went cartwheeling down the road.

The bear rolled over Litz's head, cracking his helmet, and scratched his back before scampering up a hill above the road.

Litz's wife drove by shortly after the crash and took her husband to the hospital. He hoped to be able to return to teaching science at Target Range Middle School on Friday.


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