Snake on the Loose: Escaped Cobra in Florida Causes Hysteria, Search Still On Going
A normally quiet Florida town was overwhelmed with panic as reports of an escaped cobra surfaced. The Internet reacted wildly to the news, and authorities launched a snake hunt to find the predator.
Florida authorities are reportedly issuing a warning to stay away from the loose cobra if seen. The cobra is a pet snake and it managed to escape from its owner who is from Ocala, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).
Brian Purdy, the snake owner, filed a missing snake report last Monday Mach 13, according to a report. The cobra is already about two feet long. The following days, residents used Twitter to express their concern about the situation.
On Tuesday, March 14, authorities said they still weren't able to find the missing cobra. From here, notice and alerts were issued regarding the missing snake, creating a bit of hysteria for the residents who expressed concern over a loose cobra with potentially fatal venom in their neighborhood. Despite anger from neighbors and residents, the cobra owner is said to have legal license to care for a cobra since May 2016. By standards, cobra owners are mandated to keep the cages escape-proof.
"Public safety is the number one concern," Robert Klepper, a spokesperson from FWC said in an interview. "We wanted to emphasize that this is a venomous snake and a dangerous animal and should not be approached."
What worries the Florida residents is the potentially toxic venom that the cobra has. Anyone bitten by a cobra is advised to be rushed to the hospital as soon as possible to prevent the venom from spreading all over the body, also to have anti-venom shots administered.
The authorities, despite the urgency of the situation, tried to calm the residents. They say the cobra may be on the loose, but it won't be in plain sight because it will try to get away from humans.