HomeOutdoorsViralLOOK: Receptionist Shocked to Find Deadly Eastern Brown Snake Inside Printer Drawer

LOOK: Receptionist Shocked to Find Deadly Eastern Brown Snake Inside Printer Drawer

by Caitlin Berard
Highly Venomous Eastern Brown Snake in Australia
(Photo by Ken Griffiths via Getty Images)

A receptionist at a Toyota car dealership was horrified to find an Eastern brown snake, the second most venomous snake in the world, lurking inside the paper drawer of her printer.

The day began like any other, with the receptionist taking calls, compiling paperwork, and assisting customers. As the day wore on, her printer ran out of paper – still, nothing out of the ordinary. As she pulled open the paper drawer, however, she received a heart-stopping shock. A deadly Eastern brown snake was coiled inside the warm machine.

Without a second thought, dealership workers contacted snake rescuers from Australian Snake Catchers, a company based in Sydney. Snake catchers rushed to the scene, moving the printer outside before using a snake hook to dislodge the deadly Eastern brown. They then posted a video of the daring reptile removal to their Facebook page.

“This snake decided to make this printer into a 3D version,” Australian Snake Catchers wrote in the caption. “The receptionist from a Windsor Dealership was about to refill the paper but when she pulled out the drawer she luckily saw this Eastern Brown Snake.”

“We were dispatched to remove it so business could continue,” they continued. “All is well that ends well. This could have been quite a different and dangerous outcome.”

What Makes an Eastern Brown Snake So Deadly?

As Australians learn from an early age, the Eastern brown snake isn’t approachable like its friendlier relatives. An easily spooked species, the Eastern brown attacks when frightened, sinking its tiny 0.12-inch fangs into its target.

Because their fangs are so small, a bite can be prevented with a single layer of clothing. Despite that, however, Eastern browns cause more fatalities in Australia than any other species. Though not nearly as large as the many python species who call Australia home, the Eastern brown packs a punch at just 5 feet in length. A single bite can kill an adult human in under an hour.

“This species is common throughout the eastern half of Australia and is particularly abundant in farmland and suburban areas where they can find their favorite prey: rats and mice,” Australian reptile researcher Alessandro Palci told Newsweek. “Because these snakes can thrive in suburban areas this also means that humans can come across them quite often.”

If administered quickly, antivenom can prevent serious injury or death in an Eastern brown snake’s victim. Many victims, however, don’t even know they’ve been bitten until it’s too late.

“If a bite does occur, medical attention needs to be sought immediately, because they have a very potent neurotoxic venom, which can quickly lead to paralysis and death,” Palci said. However, “because of their small fangs, bites typically look like very small scratches and can thus be easily overlooked.”