British bus rider wraps python as face covering

World | 16 Sep 2020 11:25 am

A man in Britain has been seen on a pulic bus with a snake wrapped around his face, as if it were a face mask and no one appeared bothered. 

Some reports from London identify the snake as a python.

The passenger was travelling from Swinton to Manchester on Monday, London's Evening Standard reports.

A passenger, who wanted to remain anonymous, said she thought the man was wearing a “funky mask” at first before she caught sight of the reptile on the hand rails.

She said she found the incident “really funny” and that none of the other passengers appeared to be bothered by the snake, adding: “No-one batted a eyelid.”

Using a face covering on public transport has been compulsory since June 15, except for people who are exempt for reasons of age, health or disability.

A Transport for Greater Manchester spokesperson said: “Government guidance clearly states that this needn’t be a surgical mask, and that passengers can make their own or wear something suitable, such as a scarf or bandana.

“While there is a small degree of interpretation that can be applied to this, we do not believe it extends to the use of snakeskin – especially when still attached to the snake.”

One 46-year-old passenger told the Manchester Evening News: "He had it wrapped around his face like a mask getting on the bus.''

Professor of Science Communication at the University of Gloucestershire Adam Hart told ‘There are, unsurprisingly, no studies of the effectiveness of “snake masks” but I think we can confidently say that this is not an effective way of reducing the spread of coronavirus.

"The gaps between the coils that allow the “wearer” to breathe will also allow virus particles to pass through. It is, quite frankly, a ridiculous face covering.''

When asked what other dangers the ‘mask’ could pose, Professor Hart said: "From the photo it looks like the snake is a large python so it isn’t venomous but instead kills prey by constriction. Many pet constrictors are quite used to being handled and are very docile but clearly having a large snake in a position to potentially wrap itself around your neck is a risk.''-Photos: Manchester Evening News.-The Standard



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