An Ingham father-of-three is in Townsville Hospital after he was bitten by the highly venomous snake as he loaded his kayak onto his vehicle on a cane farm in Abergowrie, Hinchinbrook, two days ago.
An Ingham father-of-three is in Townsville Hospital after he was bitten by the highly venomous snake as he loaded his kayak onto his vehicle on a cane farm in Abergowrie, Hinchinbrook, two days ago.

Dad cheats death after dangerous snake strike

An Ingham fly-in, fly-out mine worker bitten by a death adder snake during a kayaking expedition two days ago remains in hospital after cheating death.

Father-of-three young children Ben Duffy, 32, was bitten by the highly venomous snake on a cane field headland in Abergowrie in rural Hinchinbrook as he was loading his kayak onto a vehicle about 4pm on Wednesday.

Mr Duffy's wife, Jenna, said that due to the length of time it took to get her husband to hospital, first Ingham and then Townsville, it was too late to administer anti-venom.

"The doctors have told him today that he's got to wait it out because it was past the time they could administer anti-venom, so he's just got to wait it out," she said.

 

Jenna and Ben Duffy went to Ingham State School together, began dating at age 19, were married two years later and have three beautiful children aged 9, 8 and 5. This photo was taken on their 11th anniversary. Picture: SUPPLIED
Jenna and Ben Duffy went to Ingham State School together, began dating at age 19, were married two years later and have three beautiful children aged 9, 8 and 5. This photo was taken on their 11th anniversary. Picture: SUPPLIED

 

Mrs Duffy said she had every faith in the actions of the paramedics and medical teams at both Ingham and Townsville hospitals.

She said Ben, a mechanic at the Cannington Silver and Lead Mine in northwest Queensland, had been kayaking with her father, Peter Kocisa, when he was bitten on the ankle on the rural property about 30 minutes out of town.

Mr Kocisa ripped off his shirt and applied a tourniquet and called an ambulance.

After transport to Ingham, Mr Duffy was transferred by ambulance to Townsville.

Mrs Duffy said her husband was in good spirits until yesterday morning, saying his eyes became droopy and he began to have difficulty swallowing,

In a social-media post last night, Mrs Duffy said her husband was unable to personally respond to the messages of support.

"(I) can't thank everyone enough for all their help and offers of help," she wrote.

Speaking to the Herbert River Express this morning, Mrs Duffy said her husband was still conscious.

 

Mrs Duffy and her children, now aged 9, 8 and 5. Picture: SUPPLIED
Mrs Duffy and her children, now aged 9, 8 and 5. Picture: SUPPLIED

 

Mrs Duffy, who works for Palm Island Barge Company, said her husband was a well-liked man who was adored by his children, who attend Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School Ingham.

"We're going to be okay; we've just got to wait, unfortunately," she said.

 

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A Townsville University Hospital spokesman said Mr Duffy was in a stable condition.

He said anti-venom was available in Ingham.

"There is a protocol for administering anti-venom locally or in Townsville," he said.

"When he presented, the protocol was that the best way to treat him, the appropriate way to treat him, was in Townsville, rather than Ingham."

The spokesman said that without going into specifics, the treatment "was eminently sensible".

Originally published as Dad cheats death after dangerous snake strike



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