How to stay safe when you encounter a snake | News
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC)- It seems like snakes are all over the place: yards, roads, porches and of course the woods.
Just this weekend a Jefferson County Sheriff's deputy chasing a suspect in the woods near Saint Vincent's East shot and killed a rattlesnake. The deputy says it was ready to strike him or his K-9.
Experts say, if you are bitten, the best thing to do is to rush to get medical help.
"In general it's always safe to come present to an emergency department for an evaluation," UAB ER Dr. Jim Galbraith said.
Galbraith says it can take four to five hours for symptoms or swelling to appear after a snake bite.
"So if you get bit by a snake, the first thing you want to do is get yourself out of the area where the snake is present. It is not advised to capture or go after to identify the snake," Galbraith said.
He says rattlesnakes, copperheads and water moccasins are typically the snakes that live in our part of the country.
Chris Patterson with Critter Control says he's going on more jobs to get snakes out of homes and yards.
"We've probably gone from having one to two jobs a month, to 20 or 30 calls a month," Patterson said.
He says snakes come out in the sun to absorb heat so they can digest food, which means you are more likely to encounter them.
So what's the best way to avoid a confrontation or a venomous bite?
"Best thing to do is just leave them alone. They're more terrified of us, then us of them," Patterson said.
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