A bee attack in Rio Hondo left one man in critical condition over the weekend, and authorities are making sure it doesn’t happen to anyone else.
City officials say that Africanized bees were to blame – they’re much more aggressive than normal honey bees – and pose a threat if left untreated.
“Typically the Africanized bees, they’ll chase you to the ends of the world,” says William Bilokury, Rio Hondo’s Public Safety Director.
When Rio Hondo police arrived on scene at the 20000 block of Reynolds Street, they found a homeowner received more than one thousand bee stings.
“Upon arrival he found Mr. Hill, the victim, on the ground, semi-conscious,” Bilokury says. “He was running a tractor and while he was operating the tractor in the area…”
The victim’s wife made the call and tried to help her husband by spraying the bees with a water hose until police arrived and transported him to the hospital.
“Check your environment first before you go wandering around your property – especially here,” Bilokury adds. “These bees are everywhere.”
Hill is still recovering out in San Antonio, and Bilokury wants to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else.
The first step, he says, is making sure you clean up your property.
“Like tires, old boxes, any equipment – we’ve had to pull bees out of farming equipment and that’s a process. We’ve had to disassemble pieces of equipment out in the field just trying to kill the hive,” he says.
It is hard to differentiate between Africanized bees and the average honey bee. If you have a hive on your property that isn’t attacking anyone, you should still have it removed by a professional.
“There’s plenty of wild land these bees can cohabitate with us – they don’t need to be around your house, your business or your workplace,” Bilokury says.
Authorities have yet to find the hive that attacked the Rio Hondo resident, but tell CBS 4 they’ll continue to search the property until they do.