OFFICERS from the Civil Protection Service are investigating whether the death of a 70-year-old Norwegian man in Mijas who was killed by multiple bee stings is due to negligent beekeeping.
The investigators are checking whether the 150 hives near where the man was found, which are regulated by the Junta de Andalucia, comply with the government’s own beekeeping regulations.
The man’s body was found by a female dog walker a day after he went missing. The man was said to be wearing a t-shirt and shorts, and was found with his top covering his head and multiple bee stings to his body.
Investigators are not sure why the man was stung but say it is certain he walked past a hive, was stung, tried to flee but died about 400 metres down the path.
Pathologists have said they cannot be certain whether the man suffered from an allergy but say he was stung enough times that a lethal amount of apitoxin entered his blood stream, prompting anaphylactic shock.
In 2005 the Ministry for the Environment published a map of areas in public forests suitable for beekeeping, as well as guidance on appropriate signage and the number of hives which is “sustainable.”
The department also published a safety manual ensuring hives must be signposted with a yellow poster warning of the presence of bees. In addition, the hives must be be fenced in and cannot be positioned within 400 metres of public buildings, 100 metres from housing or 200 metres from motorways.