News roundup: Copperhead bites landscaper who reached for it

Copperheads are known for biting more people in the U.S. than any other species, but their venom is the least toxic so deaths are rare. Photo: Cherokee County Fire DepartmentCopperheads are known for biting more people in the U.S. than any other species, but their venom is the least toxic so deaths are rare.
Photo: Cherokee County Fire Department

A landscaper working in Canton, Georgia, was bitten by a copperhead snake while clearing debris and brush from a home.

The 22-year-old’s co-worker told authorities they noticed the snake on the back of the landscaping truck and the victim was bitten on the finger when he tried to pick it up.

The victim was taken to the hospital and was expected to survive.

According to Cherokee County Fire Department spokesman Tim Cavender, this is the first reported snake bite in the county this year.

“If you see a snake, the best thing to do is to leave it alone,” he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Don’t try and pick it up.”

If you spot a snake in a populated area, authorities say, call animal control. If someone is bitten, call 911 immediately.

“People who are afraid of snakes will go and kill even what we call the ‘good snakes,’ the kingsnakes who will usually eat the venomous snakes,” Cavender said.

Studies have shown that Georgia’s copperhead population has increased due to the lack of kingsnakes. Snakes are most active in spring and summer.

Landscaper alerts woman to fire

 An attentive landscaper in Tennessee who noticed a fire was able to warn the owner of the danger on Wednesday.

According to Church Hill Fire Department Chief David Wood, the fire began when electrical wiring shorted on the back deck of the home.

“The lady who lives there was asleep,” Wood told Kingsport Times-News. “She works nights and she worked the night before.”

The landscaper was mowing a neighbor’s yard when he noticed the smoke and checked the backyard to see that the deck was on fire. After waking the woman, the two used a water hose to battle the flames until firefighters arrived about 10:45 a.m.

Wood notes that without the landscaper’s observation, the fire could have easily spread to the house.

“They had some wiring on the deck that shorted out, and it probably burned up about a third of the deck,” he said. “But the fire was confined to the deck, and it didn’t even do any smoke damage to the house. They’ll have to replace the deck, but if it hadn’t been for the guy mowing the lawn across the street, it could have been a lot worse.”

Lawn worker dies after mower tips

 On Memorial Day, a lawn maintenance worker was mowing at the Broken Sound Golf Club in Boca Raton, Florida, when his mower overturned.

The mower tumbled down a hill and landed in a pond upside down, trapping 21-year-old Ismael Malave. He was still pinned under the mower when first responders arrived about 11:15 a.m.

Malave was taken to Delray Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Police spokeswoman Sandra Boonenberg said that it was uncertain whether the cause of death was from drowning.


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