I used to work for a company that serviced the phone pedestals. They gave you a large map and circled the peds that needed services...usually cutting weeds and brush away from them, opening them up, spraying a special chemical in there to coat the wires and was supposed to keep out mice, roaches, spiders and BEES! We had to set out safety cones, use flashers at all times on our own vehicles and wear hardhats, safety goggles and a BRIGHT COLORED safety vest
In one area of New Mexico, every ped that I opened had bees in it! Much like what you had to deal with. It got so bad that I had to use my own jacket and veil on a day to day basis.....as those bees were a mess to remove (I feel for you here JP) and all of the bees had pissy attitudes.
One day the main supervisor was there when I was 'caught' removing a hive of bees from a ped. He walked over to where I was in that bright safety vest and the bees were all over him...another reason that I used my bee jacket and veil when I opened the peds...
I got the bees off of him and helped remove the stingers from his bare arms. He then promptly WROTE ME UP and I was later fired for 'refusal to wear safety equipment'.....
As I did not have permission to wear or use a veil and bee jacket to remove the bees from the peds....however, I was still expected to wear the safety vest, which attracted the bees like a magnet,( as well as wear the properly approved hardhat) and that bright colored jacket was the reason that he was stung so many times..... He also told me that IF and WHEN I was stung, that was part of the job and if I needed medical attention, that I had to call and request it through the proper channels....the safety deaprtment would hear my case and if they thought that I was in 'danger' they would send out an ambilance! This was the policy! The company would rather someone gets stung to death, than violate their safety policy!
I was out in the middle of nowhere and never seen any other vehicles..no help nearby if I needed to call...well, there was not any phones for miles. Cell phones were worthless too!