Pensioner dies after attack by swarm of wasps

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The Independent Online

A pensioner in her 70s has died after being attacked by a swarm of wasps.

The woman, named locally as Janette Duncan, suffered a cardiac arrest after the incident in Galleywood, near Chelmsford in Essex, on Sunday. A man was also taken to hospital.

The wasp attack happened as the pair went for a drink in the Galleywood Social Club. It is understood that a passer-by accidentally disturbed the hedge where the wasps had their nest.

One woman said: "At first they seemed OK, but then we suddenly realised she was getting worse and a neighbour called the ambulance."

An ambulance spokeswoman said: "It appears that the cardiac arrest was caused by the attack. We took her to Broomfield Hospital by land ambulance with air ambulance medics escorting. The man was also taken to Broomfield Hospital by land ambulance, suffering minor wasp stings."

Villagers said the pensioner's family was in a state of shock. A spokesman for Essex Police said: "The matter is now in the hands of the Essex coroner and it is expected that an inquest will be held into the woman's death."