Snakes David Smith BCN 3735 Dr. Hinze SNAKES!!!!!!!
Introduction • Most snake bites caused by non venomous snakes • 120 Known species in North America • 20 Venomous to humans, (except Hawaii) • 50% Snake bites by venomous species are “Dry Bites” ~ No venom injected SNAKES!!!!!!!
OSHA • General Duty Clause Each employer shall furnish to each of his employees a place of employment which is free from recognized hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees. • 1926.21(b)(4) “In job site areas where harmful plants or animals are present, employees who may be exposed shall be instructed regarding the potential hazards, and how to avoid injury, and the first aid procedures to be used in the event of injury.” SNAKES!!!!!!!
Facts • 5 0f 6 venomous snakes found in Florida are Pit Vipers • Key Identifying Feature: Facial pit (heat sensing) between eye and nostril on each side of the head; primary sense used to track, triangulate, and bite • Venom is hemotoxin which destroys blood & walls of blood vessels • Venom glands give the snake head a triangle shape. Glands are located behind jaw • Vipers, generally have a pronounced ridge over the eye giving it a ‘mean’ appearance SNAKES!!!!!!!
Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake • Largest of the rattlers • Strike & Recoil in ¼ Second • Typically will not chase and gives rattle/ hiss warning • Does not have to coil to strike • Keep 6’ away • Accurately strikes ½ body length • Bites often result of carelessness • Prey: Rabbits, Squirrels, rats, mice, etc. • Found in palmettos, pinewoods, bushy & grassy areas Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
Timber Rattlesnake • Habitat: Sugar cane fields, plantations, flatwoods, river bottoms, farms The Pit of a Pit Viper Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
Pigmy Rattlesnake • Aggressive • Rattle sounds like an insect buzz • Habitat: Same as diamondback Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
Water MoccasinCottonmouth • Vary in color while maturing • In defense it will coil and open its mouth • Does not have to be coiled to strike • Can bite underwater • Habitat: Near water, trees, grassy patches, • Will often hold its ground! Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
Southern Copperhead • Habitat: Wet & Dry areas around wood piles • Feed on frogs, small rodents Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
Coral Snake • Related to the Mamba & Cobra • Not a viper. Will have a slender head • Venom is a neurotoxin which attacks the nervous system causing paralysis. The most potent venom! • Timid, non aggressive~ bite can be deadly • Habitat: Burrow in ground, wood piles • Identification: Yellow and red bands together; bands go completely around body Black head. Scarlett King bellies are white • Red & Black= Friend of Jack. Red & Yellow= Kill a fellow • King snake in Florida does not resemble a Coral snake Source: www.kingsnake.com SNAKES!!!!!!!
U.S. Snake Bite Incidence • Snake Bites are not accurately tracked, often go unreported • Average: 45,000 Snake Bites/ year in US, 7000-8000 by venomous snakes • Between 10-15 Deaths/ Year • Majority of bites in SW due to large population of rattlesnakes • North Carolina has highest state incidence Average: 19bites/100,000 persons per year • National Average: 4bites/100,000 persons per year SNAKES!!!!!!! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snakebite WHO:bulletin_1998_76(5)_515-524.pdf
Prevention/ Safety • WATCH YOUR STEP!!! • Do not touch dead snakes with bare hands. A detached snake head can still inflict a bite! • Most snakes will only bite when startled, provoked, threatened, or cornered • When working in wooded areas: • Where sturdy over the ankle boots, durable pants, and use gloves to handle refuse • Tread heavily, snakes will hear you and flea • Direct Encounters: Back away, keep your eyes on the snake SNAKES!!!!!!!
Prevention/ Safety • Do not blindly reach into wood piles, flip over rocks, etc. • Avoid snakes appearing to be dead. They often use this as a defense mechanism • Contractors engaging in activities where snakes live should provide training, have a plan in case of snake bite to include locating nearest hospital and if they are experienced in treating bites, should train employees on prevention, and outfit workers properly SNAKES!!!!!!!
First Aid • SEEK MEDICAL ASSISTANCE IMMEDIATELY!!!!! • Treat all bites as poisonous • Keep person calm and as still as possible • Remove all jewelry • Wash wound with soap & water • Apply suction device if person is more than an hour from treatment • Immobilize limb below the heart • Give 100% oxygen if available • Perform CPR if necessary SNAKES!!!!!!! Source: WebMD
Outmoded Treatments • Do not administer pain medication or give food • Tourniquets • Cutting the wound open • Sucking out venom by mouth • Snake stones • Application of any chemicals • Use of electroshock therapy • Often field treatments by untrained personnel result in damage to victim or by the person applying treatment SNAKES!!!!!!!
Summary • Watch your step in hazardous environment • Wear protective clothing • If a snake is encountered, leave it alone! • In the event of a bite, seek medical assistance immediately SNAKES!!!!!!!