A chef in Foshan, Guangdong province was killed after being bitten by a Thailand king cobra he was preparing for a dish, several minutes after the snake’s head was cut off, China Daily reports.
Various news sources reported that the cobra’s head had been severed for at least 10 to 20 minutes when the chef was bitten.
The victim, identified as Peng Fan, worked at a restaurant in Shunde specializing in soup using the venomous cobra. As Peng was preparing the dish, he reached over to throw the snake’s severed head in the trash when it clamped down on his hand and injected its fatal venom. Peng died before he could be rushed to the hospital for anti-venom treatment.
“It is a highly unusual case but it appears to be just an accident. He prepared the snake himself and was just unlucky,” a police spokesman was quoted as saying in The Mirror.
“There was nothing that could be done to save the man. Only the anti-venom could have helped but this was not given in time. It was just a tragic accident.”
Videos uploaded online show venomous snakes that are still able to move after having their heads severed [graphic content]:
“It is perfectly possible that the head remained alive and bit Peng’s hand. By the time a snake has lost its head, it’s effectively dead as basic body functions have ceased, but there is still some reflexive action,” snake expert Yang Hong-Chang told The Mirror.
“It means snakes have the capability of biting and injecting venom even after the head has been severed.”
[Image via The Mirror]