VIDEO: Fake zebra makes a run for it during zoo drill

Posted at 4:51 PM, Feb 01, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-01 16:51:22-05

TOKYO (CBS News) -- On the outskirts of Tokyo, staff at Tama Zoo grabbed their nets, sticks and radios as they prepared for a worst-case scenario.

Staff even evacuated visitors and announced that a wild animal was on the loose after an earthquake enabled its escape.

Luckily, the staffers were participating in a drill on Friday. They looked to capture one of their own employees who donned a zebra costume and wandered around the park.

The drill was designed to train staff how to react in the event of earthquake that frees an animal.

While the costumed-zebra employee is significantly slower than the real thing, Park Director Naoki Tabata said that the event was to raise staff's awareness.

The zoo has been holding training scenarios like this since 1980 when the exercise used a goat to stand-in for a lion. However, every time since then, humans have taken the role of the escaped animal.

The exercise lasted about an hour and involved over 50 staff, along with local emergency workers, before the escaped zebra was "tranquilized" and finally caught.