File picture: Lefty Shivambu
File picture: Lefty Shivambu

Lack of transport leads to death of five-year-old girl bitten by a venomous snake

By Karen Singh Time of article published Jan 4, 2022

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Durban – A five-year-old girl died at her home in the Etope village in the Oshana region in Namibia on New Year’s Day after she was bitten by an unidentified venomous snake.

In a statement released today, the African Snake Institute(ASI), which is a training provider of snake awareness across the continent, said the five-year-old girl succumbed to a snakebite on Saturday night because she could not be taken to hospital on time due to a lack of transport.

The ASI said according to the police’s crime report, the girl was at home with her mother who has a baby.

“The girl was sent to collect a diaper in a bedroom where there was no light and she could not detect the presence of a venomous snake,” said the ASI.

The ASI said the child was bitten once on the leg.

“There was no transport to take her to the hospital and the helpless minor died at home moments later,” said the institute.

According to the ASI, the snake was found and killed, but the police did not reveal what type of snake it was.

“The area is mostly populated by cobras,” it said.

According to local snake expert Nick Evans in a report done by The Mercury on Sunday, through networking with doctors at different hospitals or other snake-removers, he recorded a total of two confirmed black mamba bites last year.

“One bite was a real freak accident. A juvenile mamba crawled into a gumboot, and the inevitable happened. The second was this month, where a man was trying to beat a mamba to death,” he said, adding that both people survived.

Evans warned that attacking a snake was a bad idea as recent black mamba cases showed that the snake’s immediate reaction was to try to get away or hide.


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