Dorset police believe a bumble bee that flew straight in to the path of an oncoming car may have taken its own life. An inquiry into what was initially believed to be a routine, if tragic, accident on the A30 was turned into a suspicious death investigation.
The subsequent Coroner’s report concluded that there had been good visibility at the time of the incident, flying conditions were good, the pollen count, while high, was optimal for the bee and it is believed the route was well known to it.
Dorset police believe now that the bee must have deliberately taken its own life. ‘It’s our responsibility to investigate all sudden and suspicious road deaths,’ said DCI Simon Rendell today, adding, ‘and we are appealing to any witnesses to the incident. The bee was dressed in hi-visibility outer wear and was carrying a bag of substance we now think might have been nectar.’
Just before the incident the local Samaritans received a call, but were unable to help. ‘I just got an insistent buzzing on the line, so I reported it to BT. Only in hindsight have I realised this might have been a cry for help,’ said Samaritan call-centre agent Scott Morgan.
The bee collided with a Renault Scenic hatchback, causing minor damage to the driver’s side windscreen which was rectified by paramedics with a scraper and a wet wipe at the scene. Luckily the driver, who was tested negative for drugs, pollen and alcohol at the scene, was wearing a seatbelt.
‘The airbags didn’t deploy, however,’ noted DCI Rendell. He added that even after 20 years of attending bee collisions it doesn’t get any easier. ‘It’s informing the whole hive that brings it home,’ he said, adding, ‘I have to go now, I’ve just been advised of a major pile up involving thirty dragonflies and a transit van, multiple fatalities,’ he said, rushing to his car. ‘Luckily the van driver’s OK, just out of screenwash,’ he said.