A reminder to brush up on even the most basic of First Aid skills as we head towards peak snake season.
Figures released by St John WA show a big spike in snake bite emergency calls in the last year, with 169 people treated by paramedics.
By comparison, 104 people were treated in the 12 months to June 2018, and 120 in 2016.
“Five of the world’s 10 most venomous snakes live in Australia, St John WA first aid general manager, Aaron Harding said in a statement.
“And unfortunately, there are still many myths surrounding snake bite treatment.”
He said the most basic first aid for snake bite is this:
- Call triple-0, even if you’re unsure of the snake type
- The victim should lie flat and remain as calm and still as possible
- Bandage the bite, starting from the fingers or toes and wrapping upwards.
Common snake bite symptoms include headaches, blurred vision, nausea, drowsiness and difficulty breathing, speaking or swallowing.
The message comes after the death of a man who was bitten by a snake while bushwalking in Kelmscott in March. The man phoned 000 but was unable to provide his location, making it impossible for paramedics and police to find him.
Just days ago, a rock climber was helped by strangers after he was bitten by a venomous dugite in Bedfordale.
Mr Harding urged people to download the St John First Responder smartphone app, which can not only dial 000, it can provide operators with an exact GPS location.
“If you’re ever in an emergency situation in an unfamiliar area, the First Responder app is an incredibly important resource to have,” he said.