Bee Accident -- in the news

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Truck hauling bees crashes in Montana
Dumps honey, sending bees on rampage
Wednesday, June 16, 2004 Posted: 11:08 AM EDT (1508 GMT)

BOZEMAN, Montana (AP) -- A tractor-trailer overturned on a curve on a highway, spilling its load of hundreds of bee hives and unleashing some nine million angry honey bees.
The bees buzzed furiously as driver Lane Miller, his arm scraped to the bone, struggled to flee his rig after it overturned Monday in Bear Trap Canyon west of Bozeman. The truck slid across the highway before coming to a stop between guardrails.
"I had to kick the windshield out of the front of the cab and the bees were on me from that moment," said Miller, 41. "I've never felt so much fear in my life."
Miller walked away from the crash, and two people picked him up and took him to the hospital. Miller underwent surgery on his arm and suffered bruises and about 20 stings.
The state road was closed for 14 hours as crews and beekeepers cleaned up the 512 hives Miller was hauling from Idaho to North Dakota.
In spite of bee suits and extra clothing, beekeeper Gary Clark said he counted about 60 stings of his own.
"Everybody had literally thousands of bees on them, in their hats and on their suits," Clark said. "When we pulled the boxes out, big globs of them would fall on us."
Firefighters directing traffic also suffered stings.
"The bees were so agitated you could barely see the beekeepers or the wreckage itself, just because of the cloud of bees that were swarming," said fire chief Shawn Christiansen.
It wasn't until 3 a.m. Tuesday that a tow truck got in to haul out the tractor-trailer, leaving behind pools of honey from the overturned hives.
State Transportation Department employees dropped sand on the road to soak up the sticky mess.

I was just coming to post this:

Poor bees. Getting dumped out of a truck during an accident must have been traumatic. I notice, however, that the driver got studng only 20 times, which, when you consider he was hauling 9 million bees, ain't much.


--- Quote from: Lesli ---Poor Bees
--- End quote ---

It's not clear from the article,  but these might be lucky bees.  Usually accidents like that are declared a safety hazard and the fire company sprays them down with soap foam to reduce the hazard to nearby locals.

Well, it did say beekeepers came to clear up the bees (in the CNN article), so I guess most of the bees made it back to their happy homes. Considering the insurance payout for losing that many hives, the insurance company was probably very happy about that!


--- Quote from: Anonymous ---Considering the insurance payout for losing that many hives, the insurance company was probably very happy about that!
--- End quote ---

The cost of the hives is a drop in the bucket compared to just one personal lawsuit, especially with the outrageous awards that are given out these days.


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