Hsinchu County Fire Department yesterday said that seven people were injured after being attacked by a large number of hornets at a mountain campsite.
The department said more than 30 people who were at a waterfall near the campsite in Jianshih Township (尖石), were attacked by a large number of hornets at 9:49am.
Fifteen people were stung, with seven of them seriously hurt. The seven were treated at a hospital in Hsinchu City, it added.
The hospital said the victims are in good condition and may be able to leave soon.
The department said witnesses reported the hornets swarmed from their nest and began attacking people after a couple of boys threw stones at the nest, which was hanging under a bridge.
A 51-year-old man surnamed Su (蘇) and his 18-year-old daughter were the most seriously hurt, officials said.
The fire department reported Su as saying: “Hornets filled the air. It was terrible. People were trying to cover themselves, and were screaming and running away, but my daughter and I could not escape and were stung repeatedly.”
An 11-year-old boy and a five-year-old boy were also both stung several times, officials said.
The fire department said people should not disturb hornets’ nests and should leave the area quietly and quickly if they encounter one.
If stung by hornets, victims should not try to pull the insects’ stingers out because more venom would be released by such an action, the department said.