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Man who was bitten by Orchard Road python while handling it is recovering well

Get well soon to both man and python.

Zhangxin Zheng | January 31, 03:38 pm

A three-metre long python was captured after a tough struggle with some staff members from pest control firm, Anticimex, on Tuesday morning (Jan. 29).

The python ended up biting one of the man.

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At the end of the video, the man who was bitten is seen resting his head on his arm while squatting at the side.

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Snake tooth removed & recovering well

The managing director and president of Anticimex Asia, Tony Hurst, wrote a Facebook post on Jan. 31 to inform that the man is well and thank members of the public for their concern.

The snake’s tooth had been removed after a minor surgery and the man, Farhan, is recovering well.

Here’s a photo of the snake tooth that was extracted from Farhan’s hand.

Photo from Anticimex Singapore Facebook.

Here are the three folks that were tasked to capture the python on Tuesday.

Photo from Anticimex Singapore Facebook.

Public safety first

Hurst lauded the Anticimex staff for their “quick, reactive instinct and action” on Tuesday when they tried to capture the python in Orchard Road which is busy and populated.

The post also highlighted that the priority of the team was public safety and there was no intent to harm the python.

“The situation called for quick, reactive instinct and action under a highly volatile and unpredictable situation. When the snake attempted to evade containment, not restraining the reptile by any means available could have had disastrous consequences in this busy and populated area. The importance of protecting the human public will always supersede other considerations.”

“Even after our technician was bitten, there was no malice or cruelty towards the animal, only efforts to contain it and prevent harm.”

Stepping on the python is okay

The video circulating online also showed one of them stepping on the python in an attempt to subdue the snake.

This prompted criticism from animal lovers, including the deputy chief executive of Acres, Kalai Vanan, who criticised the handling of snake as “ terrible from start to finish” and blamed their poor handling skills for how the python reacted.

In response to that, Hurst also said that the manager of the team was trained to handle snakes at the Singapore Zoo.

He also claimed stepping on the python is necessary “to restrain a powerful animal”.

“The manager of this team was trained in snake handling at the Singapore Zoo, and the personnel involved used all necessary parts of their bodies to safely relocate a very large snake in a public place. A foot is no different to a hand being used in an attempt to restrain a powerful animal, and in fact the human leg is stronger than the arm for this purpose.”

The python is now under the care of Wildlife Reserves Singapore and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) is investigating this alleged mishandling of the snake.

Here’s the full text:

31st Jan 2019

Company Release: Snake at Tang Plaza,

Anticimex thank you for the concern that has been expressed about the welfare of our injured worker. The outpouring of online support has been astounding, and I am pleased to report that after some minor surgery to remove an embedded snake tooth, Farhan is well on his way to recovery.

The footage released online shows the events of Tuesday morning at Tang Plaza – the containment of a 3m long snake, and the snake biting one of the workers. The situation called for quick, reactive instinct and action under a highly volatile and unpredictable situation. When the snake attempted to evade containment, not restraining the reptile by any means available could have had disastrous consequences in this busy and populated area. The importance of protecting the human public will always supersede other considerations.
The manager of this team was trained in snake handling at the Singapore Zoo, and the personnel involved used all necessary parts of their bodies to safely relocate a very large snake in a public place. A foot is no different to a hand being used in an attempt to restrain a powerful animal, and in fact the human leg is stronger than the arm for this purpose.

I thank the staff for their actions on the day, containing the situation in what was a very difficult setting, within a busy shopping area full of noise and people filming. As we see from the footage, all of the actions taken by the staff were directed to capturing the animal and ensuring the public were safe. Even after our technician was bitten, there was no malice or cruelty towards the animal, only efforts to contain it and prevent harm.

Moments of indecision in situations such as these could cause greater harm, so we are thankful the staff acted quickly when the situations called for it and I am proud to be working with such committed individuals.

Anticimex works closely with all authorities in order to provide a safe living environment for all.

If you encounter or are confronted by a snake the public are advised by the AVA to contact them for assistance. Anticimex will continue to abide by its mantra to ‘prevent and protect’ Singaporeans from harmful pests

Tony Hurst
Managing Director & President – Asia
Anticimex Pest Management Pte Ltd

Here’s also a statement from Acres in response to the post made by Anticimex:

“ACRES share Anticimex concerns about public safety and it is for that reason that wild animals need to be handled appropriately. Mishandling will endanger public safety, the safety of the workers handling the animals and also compromise animal welfare.

If handled properly, there would not be a need to use excessive force or step on the animal and the animal handler would also not get injured.

If there was a concern about public safety, the area should also have been properly cordoned off and members of the public kept further away from the animal. This will also help keep the animal more calm and make the handling easier.

We wish the Farhan, the injured pest control technician a speedy recovery.”

Top photo collage from the Rabbikan Khan video and Anticimex Facebook

Previously…

AVA investigates pest control firm after 3-metre python at Orchard Road manhandled

About Zhangxin Zheng

Zhangxin’s favourite pastime is singing Mulan’s soundtrack in the mangrove forests. She hopes to perfect the art of napping in a hammock in the mangroves without being drowned by rising sea levels.

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