Daring Encounter with World’s Deadliest Snake in Semi-Truck Engine Caught on Video
KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa – A daring encounter with one of the world’s deadliest snakes while curled up in the engine of a semi-truck last month was caught on video for truckers far and wide to see.
Nick Evans is the founder of the KwaZulu-Natal Amphibian & Reptile Conservation and a well-known snake rescuer in South Africa.
Evans told Transportation Nation Network (TNN) the story began at a yard just north of Durban (a coastal city in eastern South Africa) on April 21, when workers noticed a large snake slithering around the property.
Evans believes some the workers tried to kill the snake, which led the reptile to seek refuge inside a blue Freightliner that was parked on the yard.
The next morning, as someone was changing a front tire on the semi, workers realized the snake was still tucked inside the truck’s engine.
It was then, Evans said, he was summoned to the scene.
He calls snakes “amazing animals that are so feared and misunderstood,” and says it’s his mission to encourage people to “appreciate and respect these animals, rather than hate them.”
In an amazing video posted online, he captures the rescue in real time.
The video, which is less than three minutes, shows Evans approaching the semi and quickly locating the snake inside the engine.
“It’s a Black Mamba!” Evans can be heard declaring excitedly. “It’s a big Black Mamba! Not what I was expecting to be honest!”
According to National Geographic, due to the Black Mamba’s lethal venom, quick speed and extreme aggression when threatened, it is widely considered to be the world’s deadliest snake.
In fact, Evans tells TNN he is currently doing research on Black Mambas of Durban, which can account for his enthusiasm.
With the assistance of a yard worker holding a light shining on the truck’s engine, Evans uses a long tool to try to capture the animal.
“I’ve got a terrible grip on him,” he says, noting “there’s too much in the way.”
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Viewers can see the snake moving around inside the truck as Evans abandons the tool and shockingly reaches inside to grab the snake — quite literally — with his bare hand.
Seconds later, Evans pulls his hand towards him, exposing the snake’s head, which is grasped tightly between his fingers.
The snake’s recognizable inky-black mouth is open, leaving no doubt Evans’s declaration of the species was 100-percent correct: “a big Mamba!”
“He’s huge!” an onlooker can be heard saying as Evans continues to pull the snake’s massive body from the truck.
Black Mambas are the second-longest venomous snake after the King Cobra.
Evans tells the small crowd he estimates the snake’s length to be over 8.2 feet (approximately 2.5 meters).
“But fat!” Evans declares, before jokingly asking the crowd what they have been feeding him.
Evans told TNN the “healthy” snake was released back into its natural habitat, which he does with each of the reptiles he rescues.
He indicated that while he frequently removes snakes from cars, this was the first time he had rescued one from a semi.
He shared that shortly following the Black Mamba retrieval, he was called to a place where trucks had delivered some hay bales and workers discovered a highly venomous snake called a Rinkhals, which closely resembles a cobra.
Amazingly, Evans said the Rinkhals traveled almost 200 miles (300 kilometers) on the truck, from where the load was picked up, as that species of snake is not native to the area where the load was dropped in Durban.
Evans recorded the incredible Black Mamba retrieval on a GoPro and uploaded to his YouTube channel.
WATCH it below.
Photos courtesy of Nick Evans