Experts warn bites from venomous snakes are more dangerous this season

NEWTON COUNTY, Ga. — A teenager showed us his swollen leg after a snake bit him. He had been alone when it happened and it had taken him hours to get a doctor.

The teenager had been in the woods during an junior ROTC training event.

Doctors said it was good that he got help when he did.

"The pain that I felt was just very different than what I felt before," said Harold Jarquin, 17.

Jarquin spends lots of time in the woods, as part of his training. Recently, he thought he ran into a bee.

"I know what those stings feel like, so at first I thought it was a yellow jacket, but then since the pain increased, I said, "No, something is wrong,'" he said.

He had been bitten by a copperhead snake in Newton County.

"My leg was big and I saw two holes. One was bleeding, one was really not. Later on that day the pain was just increasing, increasing," he said.


Gaylord Lopez, the director of the Georgia Poison Control said warm weather brings out snakes and people. He said that this season, the reported number of snakebites is down but more of the bites reported have been serious, and have required an anti-venom treatment.

"Snake venom can be very dangerous and lethal in some cases..

Lopez said, if you see a snake, run.

If you get bit by a snake, he said, "Don't try to cut the wound open. Don't try to suck the venom out. The best thing to do is seek medical attention. Go to a hospital to be observed and evaluated," he said.

Jarquin just wants to get off his crutches and get back to winning awards with his fellow junior ROTC members.

"I don't like to let anything try to take me down from what I love," he said.