Aman who tried to free his friend from a snake that had coiled around his leg has died after being bitten, according to emergency services.
Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) staff were alerted to reports that a man was wounded near Mackay in northwest Australia at about 6:30 p.m. local time on Saturday, September 9.
The unnamed man, in his 60s, who was bitten by the snake was wounded in the arm, according to local broadcaster 7News. Bystanders attempted to assist the man by performing CPR for about 30 to 40 minutes until paramedics arrived to use a defibrillator.
QAS Acting Deputy Commissioner Claire Bertenshaw told News7: “Despite a heroic effort by the bystanders and the Queensland Ambulance Service, he was unfortunately unable to be revived and has passed away.”
According to a 2021 study by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, between 2017 and 2018 more than 3,500 were hospitalized in the country after coming across a venomous animal or plant.
It added that 19 people died due to venomous bites and stings during this period.
Australia is home to 20 of the 25 most venomous snakes in the world according to an official analysis—that figure includes the top 10. The world’s most venomous snake, the inland taipan, is found nowhere else on Earth.
In comparison, the U.S., which has a population more than 13 times that of Australia, has fewer fatal snake bite deaths on average.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said: “Each year, an estimated 7,000–8,000 people are bitten by venomous snakes in the United States, and about five of those people die. The number of deaths would be much higher if people did not seek medical care.”
News7 reported authorities said that the man’s symptoms and cardiac collapse indicate that he might have been bitten by a brown snake.
The second man, also in his 60s, was transported to the Mackay Base Hospital and is said to be in a stable condition.
The Victoria state government has said in the past that the eastern brown snake is highly venomous and is extremely dangerous to humans and other animals.
It added: “Brown Snakes are found in a variety of habitats, but usually prefer open dry areas. They are a ground-dwelling snake that’s active mainly in the daytime. In hot weather, they can move around at night, but usually retreat to shelter. Brown snakes shelter in hollow logs, rock crevices, unused animal burrows, and under rubbish around buildings. They have adapted well to farmed, grazed, and semi-urban environments.”
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This article by Anders Anglesey was first published by Newsweek on 10 September 2023. Lead Image: A stock image of an eastern brown snake. A man in Australia has died after he was bitten by a snake. GETTY.