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Bees Escape Fatal Crash: Truck Was Carrying Up To 17 Million Bees

05/25/10 12:08 AM ET   AP

Bees Escape Fatal Crash
First responders battle bees that escaped from a semi after a two-car, two-semi accident on Monday May 24, 2010 in Lakeville, Minn. One of the semis was hauling about 7,000 hives housing upward of 17 million bees for Bauer Honey of the northwestern Minnesota town of Fertile. A witness said "the air was thick with bees." (AP Photo/Star Tribune, Richard Sennott)

LAKEVILLE, Minn. — Rescue crews were using fire hoses to douse an angry swarm of bees after a fatal crash that involved a semitrailer carrying about 17 million of the insects.

Authorities say a truck hauling 7,000 bee hives was involved in the four-vehicle crash Monday on Interstate 35 near Lakeville, about 35 miles south of Minneapolis.

Minnesota State Patrol spokesman Lt. Eric Roeske says one person died and another person was airlifted to a hospital.

The hives housed roughly 17 million bees and were bound for Bauer Honey in northwestern Minnesota.

It's unclear how many bees got loose, but several emergency workers were stung. Crews tried to use fire hoses to get them to fly away.

Roeske says all lanes were open by Monday evening.

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Filed by Adam J. Rose  |