The hour-long disturbance at the emergency number, 112, has caused many problems for the Place to Bee Beekeepers Association in Eindhoven. At the start of the 112 failure, a fire broke out in one of the apiary’s hives.
The bees are kept on the grounds of the GGzE (Mental Health Care Eindhoven). The security guard noticed the fire and tried to alert the Fire Department. At the same time, bystanders used fire extinguishers to put out the fire, but this was in vain. The fire was so fierce in the dry shed and hives that it was impossible to put it out with fire extinguishers.
One of the guards drove to the fire station. The Fire Department came right away but could only do post-extinguishing. However, the Fire Department was able to prevent that burning trees and shrubs from burning further and starting a forest fire.
Some 20,000 bees survived
Two swarms, numbering 10,000 to 20,000 bees, survived the fire and fled in time. The cause of the fire could not be determined. “The fires could have started for an endless number of reasons,” Wil Brans, the Association’s secretary, says. “A bottle of water or piece of glass that reflected the sun; a spark from a cigarette or the beekeeper’s smoker, or someone who deliberately ignited it.”
“It cannot be figured out, and you rant and rave, but there is nothing to be done. I think we all need to use positive energy to build a new barn and four new hives. That will probably be a winter job. The bee season is in July and August. So hastily building new hives makes no sense”.
“Our Association’s Board will meet on Thursday morning. There will be talks with GGzE’s management on how we should proceed. Several topics will be discussed: is compensation possible through some kind of insurance? Where is a safe place to build a new shed? Who is willing to build the hives?
Editor: Melinda Walraven