Beekeepers wait to start clearing out the scene of semi-trailer truck that overturned with a cargo of bees on a highway in Lynnwood, Wash., on Apr. 17, 2015.
Ian Terry—Reuters
April 17, 2015 1:57 PM EDT

A semi-truck loaded with honeybees overturned on a Washington state highway Friday morning, spilling boxes containing millions of the insects near the town of Lynnwood. Beekeepers and firefighters arrived on the scene shortly after the 3:30 a.m. crash, the Seattle Times reports.

The truck was carrying 458 hives, holding an estimated 14 million bees. The entire load was worth around $92,000. Beekeepers managed to recover some of the hives, but as the insects became agitated, firefighters killed them by spraying a mixture of foam and water on the hives.

With many bees still on the loose, the Washington State Department of Transportation advised drivers to keep windows and vents closed.

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