A swarm of bees held up an Indigo Airlines flight for 20 minutes at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata on Monday. At 9:30 a.m. as cargo was being loaded onto the Patna-bound aircraft, a swarm of bees suddenly descended on the cargo bay. Terrified, the ground-staff immediately fled from the spot, informed sources said. Fire tenders were immediately rushed in to tackle the situation. The firemen sprayed jets of water to disperse the bees.
There were about 170 passengers on board the flight.
Monday’s incident was not a one-off affair. On August 23, an Air India flight from Aizwal landed at the airport and was parked in bay number 32 when it was attacked by bees, said Air India spokesperson Pulok Mukherjee.
The grounds by the runway are known to house stray dogs and jackals and the odd bird, which have often been a cause of concern for the airport’s Air Traffic Control. But now, it is the threat from bees appears to be a matter of growing concern for the authorities.