A Chef Died When A Cobra Bit Him 20 Minutes After He Cut Its Head Off

This post contains a really graphic video.

A male king cobra in a defensive posture by the edge of a river in Malaysia. Kristian Bell/Kristian Bell

A Chinese chef died after a snake bit his hand, 20 minutes after he had decapitated it.

The victim, Peng Fang from Foshan, Guangdong province, had been making a meal using the Indochinese Spitting Cobra as an ingredient. He went to throw the snake’s head in the bin, but it bit him in a reflexive action, according to the Mirror.

The Daily Record quotes a diner in the restuarant:

We did not know what was happening but could hear screams coming from the kitchen. There were calls for a doctor in the restaurant but by the time medical assistance arrived, the man had already died.

The Mirror quotes snake expert Yang Hong-Chang, who says reptiles can function for up to an hour after decapitation:

By the time a snake has lost its head, it’s effectively dead as basic body functions have ceased, but there is still some reflective action.

It means snakes have the capability of biting and injecting venom even after the head has been severed.

This horrifying video shows exactly how much mobility a decapitated cobra can have.


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Alan White is a news editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
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