An Alice Springs man is lucky to have escaped serious injury after a highly venomous king brown snake bit into his bike tyre instead of his leg after a late-night ride.
Tyrone Pahh was putting his bike into his garage on Sturt Terrace about 9:30pm on Tuesday when he unknowingly disturbed a large snake which had slithered in under the roller door.
Mr Pahh said he heard a hissing sound, turned the light on and looked down to find a metre-long snake.
“It sounded like a lot of pressure coming out of a tyre … so I thought my tyre was flat,” he said.
“But as I’ve turned my phone on and looked down, it’s a snake and it’s actually striking at me, so I’ve thrown the bike and ran … like a big wuss.
“I think I’m pretty lucky now when I look back on it, especially given what kind of snake it was.”
‘He would have been a fairly sick puppy’
Alice Springs snake catcher Rex Neindorf said it was lucky the snake bit the bike and not Mr Pahh.
“It was a Mulga [king brown] snake, they are highly venomous but it takes you a fair while to die, at least half a day to die,” he said.
“He would have been a fairly sick puppy.
“He was quite lucky that his tyre was in the way and his tyre copped the bite; as it is, his bike died.”
Mr Neindorf was called to Mr Pahh’s house and found that venom had been left on the bike tyre.
He said it was fairly common for snakes to attack tyres due to vibration and movement.
“The snake was only frightened because of the movement of the roller door, and the snake did hiss, which is the warning.”
Mr Neindorf said a number of people had been bitten by snakes in the Top End in the past few days.
The incident comes only a few days after he warned Alice Springs locals to check their backyard pools for snakes before swimming, as desert creatures appear in town seeking water and respite from rising temperatures.
“Snakes are well and truly on the move [across the NT],” he said.