Responding to a call about a person with a bee sting, authorities arrived on the scene, only to discover the “whole block was covered with an influx of bees,” according to Lisa Derderian, a spokeswoman for the city of Pasadena told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.
First responders saw a large amount of bees about a block long buzzing around both sides of the street, Derderian told the Los Angeles Times.
While treating a patient at the scene, one firefighter sustained multiple bee stings, the newspaper reported.
Pasadena has seen bee swarms in the past, but “nothing to this magnitude,” Derderian said.
Meanwhile, a police officer assisting the fire department with crowd and traffic control also was stung multiple times, Pasadena police spokesman Lt. Bill Grisafe said. The officer was taken to a local hospital for treatment.
Grisafe said there were four to five officers doing crowd and traffic control at the time of the incident, the Tribune reported.
An apiarist who responded to the incident safely removed the hive with an assist from firefighters as he used a ladder truck to reach the colony before spraying carbon dioxide and foam into the nest. He estimated there were 30,000 to 40,000 bees and told authorities the colony consisted of Africanized bees, the Times reported.
“We have firefighters who have been working here for many, many years, and they said this is by far the most bees they’ve seen at one location,” Derderian said.
The hive was lodged in the exterior eaves of a Howard Johnson hotel on Colorado Boulevard between South Bonnie and North Sierra Bonita avenues, according to Derderian.
Authorities shut down Colorado Boulevard near Pasadena City College for a few hours and urged students, faculty and staff at the college to stay indoors.