Local Arizona news has been abuzz with stories about bee attacks and hive recoveries all over the valley lately. And Arizona locals know that as the temperature starts to rise unfortunately so does the number of bee encounters around the Valley of the Sun.  El Mirage Fire Department officials say they are ready and equipped to perform rescues and provide emergency treatment due to a bee attack.

But the only reason the fire department would “foam the bees” is for rescue purposes, officials said. Any other situation such as having bees in a tree is not considered a bee emergency and may require a professional bee control company, they said.

The El Mirage Firefighters offer these 5 tips to “bee” safe this summer:

1.) Run for shelter: If bees get riled up, the most important thing to do is run away as fast as possible and find shelter as soon as possible. Take refuge in a house, tent, or a car with the windows and doors closed.

2.Don’t be a fool: Bees are smarter than they look. Do not try to stand still in an attempt to fool the bees. Do not try to fight the bees.

3.Avoid water: If you’re enjoying one of the many beautiful Arizona lakes, please know that they will not provide refuge from a bee attack. Although it may be tempting, do not jump into water. Bees will wait above the water until the person comes up for air.

4.) Cover up: If you’re a victim of a bee attack, grab a towel, blanket or shirt to cover your face. The stings on the chest and abdomen are far less serious than those to the facial area.

5.) Seek help immediately: Once away from the bees, evaluate the situation. If stung more than fifteen times, or if there are any symptoms other than local pain and swelling, seek medical attention immediately. If there are other people being stung or you think others are in danger, call 9-1-1 immediately.

For more information, visit www.cityofelmirage.org or call the El Mirage Fire Department at 623-583-7968. Please stay safe this summer and always “bee” aware of your surroundings. - Lisa


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