Charlotte airport handles bees, coyotes, fire Wednesday

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — From bees to coyotes to a fire -- it appeared to be one problem after another Wednesday at Charlotte Douglas International.

Chopper 9 flew over the airport Wednesday as fire crews and medics worked to contain a swarm of bees that surrounded the nose of a US Airways flight bound for Indianapolis.

They were forced to call in a beekeeper to get the situation under control.

"There was probably maybe 15,000 bees," said beekeeper Jimmy Odom. "When they're clustered like that, they're really very calm. They're not defending anything. They're lost and confused."

After a two-and-a-half hour delay, the flight finally took off.

Passengers were relieved when they finally landed safely in Indianapolis.

Shortly after the bees were contained outside the airport, a fire broke out inside beneath one of the moving walkways in Concourse E, the same concourse affected by the bees.

"There was a fire. It was put out immediately, but it is still smoking, so they're trying to find the root cause of incident," said Assistant Aviation Director Jack Christine.

Charlotte Fire Department was called in to take care of it. No one was hurt and officials reopened Concourse E three hours later.

If that wasn't enough, flights were also delayed due to coyotes on the runway.

"All airports do have wildlife management plans. There is wildlife on airport," said Assistant Aviation Director Herbert Judon.

Eyewitness News Anchor Sarah Rosario was on one of the flights delayed by coyotes. She said the pilot came over the intercom and told passengers they'd be delayed because three coyotes were on the runway, and wouldn't move.

"When I got off the plane, I talked to the pilot and he said that he didn't know where the coyotes came from. But he said that it delayed about 10 flights. He was like, they were mostly US Airways flights," she said.

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