Guatemalan mother, son attacked by swarm of bees near border

Border agent rescues them

By Nicole Chavez, CNN
Sean Gallup/Getty Images

A Guatemalan woman and her 8-year-old son were rescued in Texas after thousands of bees attacked them near the border, US Customs and Border Protection officials said.

A Border Patrol agent patrolling in Brownsville, Texas, on Tuesday noticed a small swarm of bees in his vehicle. After clearing his vehicle, the agent started tracking the rest of the bees and spotted thousands of them covering what it looked like "jacket and a bundle," the agency said in a statement.

"Upon closer investigation, the agent realized the bundle was a person curled up in the fetal position," the statement said.

The agent yelled at the person to get up and run to his patrol vehicle but realized that someone else needed help.

"As the person stood up, the agent noticed the person was covering a small child," the statement said.

The three of them were inside the patrol vehicle waiting for an ambulance when the boy started vomiting. Border Patrol officials said the agent decided to quickly take them to the hospital instead of waiting.

The boy and his mother are being treated in a local hospital. Details of their conditions are unknown, but officials said they were admitted in the intensive care unit. They are expected to recover, authorities said.

They are expected to be processed by immigration officials once they are released from the hospital.

Last year, Border Patrol agents rescued a family from El Salvador who was also attacked by a swarm of bees near Rio Grande City, a town along the border and about 100 miles northwest of Brownsville.

The agents used fire extinguishers to drive the bees away from mother, her 13-year-old daughter and her 10-year-old son, the agency said in statement.

The incident comes as US authorities say they're seeing a spike in immigrants illegally crossing the US-Mexico border, largely from Central America.

For months, Customs and Border Protection officials have been dealing with a growing array of health problems, as they face more families and children coming across the border -- a shift from previous years when single adult males made up a large number of border apprehensions.

Immigrant rights advocates have raised concerns about the medical care that detainees are getting inside overcrowded facilities, and top CBP officials have warned that the agency facing a crisis and need more resources to handle it.

CNN's Catherine Shoichet contributed to this report.

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