April 29, 2009
Postman bitten by snake in a box
A British letter carrier got an unpleasant surprise when a venomous snake lurking in a post box bit him on the hand.
Alan Wakley told the Burnham & Highbridge Weekly News he is sure the snake, small and olive-green in color, was an adder. But he said his hand did not become swollen so the snake may not have actually injected him with venom, although he could see the mark of its fangs.
The collection box in Brean Cove in Somerset, set into a wall, has now been sealed off with a sign: Out of use. Caution -- Snake (Adder).
The common European adder, which has a range as far east as China, is the only venomous snake found in England.
I opened the box to empty the post and expected to find a couple of letters and a few snails, which often crawl in through a small hole in the bottom, Wakley said.
But when I opened the door and put my hand in I could hardly believe it when a snake jumped out and bit my hand.
Wakley hurled the snake onto the ground, where it quickly slithered off into the underbrush.