‘Thousands of bees’ cause hospitalisations after lorry carrying hives overturns

Two people were taken to hospital after thousands of bees swarmed over a motorway after more than 200 hives spilled out of an overturned lorry.

Both members of the public were treated for stings, along with several more that were using the road at the time, including the driver of the truck.

The incident took place on Interstate 80 near Summit County in the US state of Utah.

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Beekeepers took to the highway in an attempt to recover the legions of swarming bees but pointed out that the hives had been severely damaged.

Beekeeper Sam Cohen told KSTU-TV: "Unfortunately, more were damaged than not. There were maybe 5% that were salvageable. It's sad to see."

The incident follows reports earlier this month that a swarm of killer Asian hornets could soon be heading for Britain.

Having already killed five people in France, the hornets have been mating in the Channel Islands and might be attracted inland when the hot weather returns, as is forecast during July.

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The hornets proved deadly across the Channel due to their powerful stings triggering anaphylactic shock.

The flying fiends – which are much bigger than British hornets and have distinctive yellow-tipped legs – can wolf down 50 honey bees-a-day each and have jaws strong enough to chew through beekeepers’ protective clothing.

The National Bee Unit – which works for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs or Defra – urges people who encounter them to get in touch.

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