Six people were hospitalized on Saturday, including three firefighters, after being stung by a swarm of bees outside a Ralphs grocery store in Monterey Park, California.
A beehive up a tree in the parking lot of the store was somehow disturbed causing the swarm, according to the fire department.
The disturbance lead to the bees attacking numerous people in the parking lot and two women were completely covered in bees, according to Monterey Park Fire Chief Mark Khail. Another woman was stung and ran into the store.
When firefighters arrived on the scene and attempted to save the women they were also stung by the bees, Khail said.
One witness told KTLA that he was nearly stung while riding his bike near the lot.
“When I got here there was a bee around my head so I started riding faster,” said Michael Hsu, a witness and food truck employee. “They were still around me so I parked my bike over there and ran into the food truck. I saw a lot of people with bees around them.”
The hive, which was about 50 yards away from the store, was sprayed with expanding foam to keep the bees inside until the arrival of a bee keeper later tonight, according to the Department.
Three pedestrians and three firefighters were transported to multiple local hospitals in the area, according to authorities.
The firefighters were later released and the conditions of the other patients is unknown at this time, Khail said.
Officials do not yet know how or why the beehive was disturbed.
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