A quick-thinking truckie may have saved his own life by making a dramatic 5km dash for help after being bitten by a snake at a remote parking bay in Queensland yesterday.
The 42-year-old had stopped to make a routine tyre check at Belyando Crossing, about 5km south of the Belyando Road House on the Gregory Highway, about 306km west of Mackay.
According to a media statement released by RACQ CQ Rescue today, while inspecting and checking the pressure in his semi-trailer and dog tyres, he was bitten twice by a snake.
The driver immediately jumped into the truck and drove 5km to the Belyando Crossing roadhouse at Llarnath to get help.
Roadhouse staff called 000 and helped bandage the bites and splint the driver’s leg to immobilise him.
“He was very unwell and in and out of consciousness,” said the media release.
RACQ CQ Rescue was tasked by Queensland Health about 12.30pm and with a doctor and Critical Care Paramedic on board, departed for the scene, landing at the remote roadhouse an hour later.
RACQ CQ Rescue landed in a parking lot near the roadhouse and loaded the patient into the helicopter.
The man told the medical team he had previously had a life-threatening reaction to snake anti-venom, and being so far from medical care, the helicopter crew were ‘under pressure’ to transfer the truck driver to hospital treatment urgently. There was no time to ‘spare’.
After refuelling the helicopter quickly in Moranbah on the return flight, the patient was delivered to Mackay Base Hospital by 3pm.
Big Rigs has approached the hospital media department for an update on the driver’s condition.
Update – 3.30pm, September 23
The Mackay Base Hospital media spokesperson tells us the truckie was discharged from hospital last night, September 22.