Neighbors help save woman from bee attack

CREATED Jul 26, 2011

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Reporter:  Jessica Chapin
Web Producer: Layla Tang

TUCSON (KGUN9- TV) - For the third time in three weeks, bees attack in Tucson.  Monday night, they swarmed a woman walking her two dogs in a neighborhood near 22nd and Pantano. 

She was walking across a wash when she swatted a bee with her hat.  Shortly after, she found herself dropping everything to run for her life, knocking on the door of the nearest house.  Brittany Silva and her family let her in.

"We opened the door and this lady is screaming for help," said Silva. "She's being attacked by swarms and swarms of bees and she's bleeding and my husband tells me to grab my baby and to get out."

Silva got her baby to safety and came back to help, getting stung in the process several times.  Even neighbors who came outside to find out what was going had to run for safety.  One woman dropped her purse and keys, leaving her car door open and sprinted inside.  Tucson firefighters sprayed those being attacked with a soapy mixture to kill the bees.  Several people were stung, but all of them are doing well.

The woman who knocked on Silva's door was released from the hospital Monday night, and left a note for the Silvas Tuesday morning, thanking them for saving her life.

"I would've opened the door because I would hope that someone would do the same thing for myself," said Silva, who didn't know the woman was being attacked by bees when she had answered.

The neighborhood homeowner's association called exterminators Tuesday afternoon to take care of the hive.  Exterminators will follow up in a week to ensure the hive remains empty.

Tucson Fire Capt. Trish Tracy warns all residents not to swat at any bee.  The woman did the right thing, covering her face and running indoors.

"If you're walking and a bee approaches you leave the bee alone, don't swat at them, they like to go for your nose and your mouth," said Tracy. "Bees let out a scent when you swat at them alerting the entire swarm to attack you."

In this case, the woman did the right thing, covering her face and running indoors.  Two weeks ago, bees attacked a young man after he threw a rock at a hive.  Bees also attacked and killed a man in a Tucson park.  That hive has since been exterminated.