BELMONT, Calif. (KGO) --A Bay Area man never saw any danger as he bent down to pick-up a tool in his garage. That's when he got a painful and dangerous surprise. A rattlesnake bit the man on his hand in the garage of his home on Ralston Avenue in Belmont.
The western hills of Belmont are considered prime rattlesnake territory. They like to hide in ravines and wooded areas, and they normally try to avoid humans.
Coiled up and hidden in a small space was a three foot long rattle snake. It bit Nancy Pieret's 74-year-old husband, Edmund, as he reached for a tool he'd dropped.
"Originally he thought it was a spider bite, but he heard a rattle and he went, 'Oh no,'" Pieret said.
Edmund left hand swelled up. Medics rushed him to the hospital for treatment while fire fighters killed the snake.
"I can't recall the last time we had anyone actually bitten by a snake," Belmont Police Cpt. Patrick Halleran said.
Doctors treating the victim couldn't either. Rattlesnake bites are rare, even though Northern California rattle snakes are native to this region. They're often found resting on warm asphalt, in tall bushes near homes and on decks. And this recent heat wave likely drew even more to the area.
"It just so happens that the garage tends to be a very cool and shady place. People in the summer leave their garage doors open, snakes find their garage door and go in," Got Snakes? owner David Allen said.
The victim's wife called a snake wrangler to inspect the entire home. He checked wood piles, bushes, and under the house. The house is now snake free. Those who live off Ralston Avenue can't believe what happened Thursday morning.
Edmund, meantime, will spend one or two more days in the hospital.