Box Jellyfish kills boy in Thailand
Tourists in Thailand are being warned to use the nation’s beaches with vigilance after a five-year-old was fatally stung by a box jellyfish while swimming.
The incident took place on the picturesque island of Koh Phangan, which the boy from France was visiting with his family. After the boy was fatally injured, local authorities have acted accordingly and posted a series of warning signs, as well as preparing emergency kits for additional stings. Lt Saengroj Somrotrat believes that box jellyfish will be apparent in the area until the end of their season in late October.
While comprehensive medical condition travel insurance packages will cover all bills incurred through hospital treatment, tourists are still being recommended to keep a watchful eye while swimming in the tropical waters.
Tentacles can grow to almost 10ft long
One of the most dangerous creatures in the world, the box jellyfish produces extremely potent venom that can be extremely painful to humans, or even fatal as in this case. While they have small heads, their tentacles can grow to nearly 10 feet in length and can be very difficult for people to avoid while swimming in the water. With around 5,000 stinging cells per tentacle, box jellyfish usually use the venom to stun or kill fish, but it can have severe effects on humans.
Should a human be stung, medical professionals recommend that all cases should be treated as urgent and potentially lethal, especially because their venom disrupts the heart and nervous systems.
Although travellers who have taken out travel insurance policies for over 70s will be protected against any medical bills, the incredible danger which a box jellyfish sting poses means that people should stay safe while swimming in the waters around Koh Phangan.
It also shows the importance of packing an emergency first aid kit when visiting tropical countries, meaning that you are able to administer treatment in quick time before emergency services arrive on scene.
Image Credit: Guido (Flickr.com)