An Amazon delivery driver is hospitalized in “very serious condition” after she was bitten by a highly venomous rattlesnake while dropping off a package in Florida, authorities said Tuesday.
The Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake was “coiled” by the front door of the Palm City home when the driver came to make the delivery, the Martin County Sheriff’s office said in a social media post on Tuesday. As the driver was walking towards the door to put the package down, she “was struck by the snake in the back of the leg, just above the knee,” the statement said.
She immediately became ill and called 911. Dispatchers were able to use GPS coordinates to locate the driver and send an ambulance to take her to the hospital, officials said. The woman’s name and age were not released.
“Our thoughts are with the driver and we hope for a full recovery after this frightening incident. Together, with the Delivery Service Partner, we’re looking into the circumstances surrounding this incident and continue to make sure that drivers understand they should not complete a delivery if they feel unsafe,” Branden Baribeau, an Amazon spokesperson, told CBS News.
“Eastern Diamondbacks are highly venomous snakes and are very common to this area,” the sheriff’s office said. Easily identifiable by large dark diamonds with brown centers and cream borders down its back and its distinct tail rattle, the rattlesnake is found throughout every county in Florida, according to the Florida Museum’s herpetology page. CBS Miami reported that the rattlesnake has enough venom to kill five people.
The Florida Poison Control Center recommends that if bitten by an Eastern Diamondback, injured parties should “not apply a tourniquet or ice, as these worsen the damage” nor should they “cut the skin and suck out the venom.” The poison control center said, “Go to the nearest hospital.”
Palm City is on Florida’s Atlantic about 40 miles north of Palm Beach.