A daytime traffic jam strikes instant fear in a truck driver transporting bees.
If you read my last post, The strangest things buzz along on pallets, you learned that honey bees can come and go as they please from the hive boxes loaded on the truck. The exceptions are:
I met a driver once that told me a hair-raising honey bee story. His true story is below.
Commercial Bee Transportation
A few years back a trucker pulls into our lumber yard and for some reason I notice a bee suit in his cab. "What's that for," I ask. The driver tells me all about commercial transporting of honey bees for pollination. Next, he told me all about the guy who invented the beehive pallet. As a pallet pro, he had my full attention.
Bee Suits Supplied
Later I ask him, "so how come I never see other truckers with their own bee suits?" "I learned my lesson" he confides. You see, when transporting bees, the beekeeper always supplies the driver with a bee suit. But, it is usually the oldest and tiredest bee suit the guy has because it might not return. The trucker I was speaking with always used the free bee suit until one fateful day on the Pacific Coast Highway.
Worst Case Scenario
This unlucky driver found himself in a 4-hour traffic jam during the hottest part of the day. Remember, if the truck is rolling down the highway or if night has fallen, the bees stay in their hives. When stopped during the day - especially if it is hot - the bees will leave. Uh oh. Not sure how this guy did it, but he tried to corral all the bees back in their hives. Why? Because several million bees never make a traffic jam better. It was after that unfortunate trip that the driver invested in his own top-of-the-line bee suit. Wise choice.
Roll Up Your Windows
Keep your eyes open when traveling our roads. Peek in the trucks when you can. You never know what might "bee" right next to you. And, if you are stuck in traffic and you see a truck like this near you, keep your windows closed. Or, perhaps, travel with your own state-of-the-art, top-of-the-line bee suit. You know... just in case!
Do you transport bees? Have a story to share? Tell me in the comments below.
Post by: David Caltrider, President (and beekeeper)
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