Snake Bites on the Rise

By Camaron Abundes
NewsWest 9

Cases of snake bites at Medical Center Hospital have nearly doubled this year compared with the last two years, and they're showing up in places most people wouldn't expect.

"A lot of snakes are coming into areas that aren't typical, backyards and barns," said Crystal Henderson an extension agent for Ector County, "snakes can lay along the curb along the street, and you don't even notice them until it's too late."

Debbie Bates found one rattle snake on her porch, two weeks ago. She says she still is in pain.

"I had reached down to plug in some lights, and the snake got me with both fangs on the hand," said Bates, "I didn't see the snake at first until I felt quite an intense pain."

Bates a Registered Nurse at Medical Center Hospital did what any of her patients would, she got to the hospital.

"We're seeing an overabundance of snakes in the area, not just because of the weather, but also because of all the construction," said Henderson.

Dr. Craig Daniel says being aware of your surroundings can help you prevent a painful bite.

"It's much better to prevent the injury than to treat it after it's occurred," said Dr. Daniel.

Rebecca Johnson, also a nurse at MCH suffered a bite last year, and says it truly is better to prevent an attack.

"I knew better than to walk in long grass, and I simply became careless. It is extremely important to be aware to wear high top boots, and stiff denim pants, and things like that," said Rebecca Johnson, R.N.