Man travels on bus with giant snake

Passengers riding on a bus in the UK were treated to a bizarre commute on Monday, when a man climbed aboard with a giant snake wrapped around his neck.

The man had the terrifying creature around his face and nose when he boarded the bus in Manchester for the 10km trip.

The snake didn’t stay in that position for long, however, as the man took the snake from around his shoulders when he was seated and allowed it to wind around the bus’ handrails.

“He had it wrapped around his face like a mask getting on the bus,” a 46-year-old female passenger told the Manchester Evening News.

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“At first I thought he had a really funky mask on, then he let it crawl around the hand rails.

“No one was really bothered on the bus but a man behind took a video. It was definitely entertaining.”

Under current COVID-19 guidelines in the UK, wearing a face mask is mandatory for anyone on public transport – though officials issued a reminder that snakes did not count as a face covering.

“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,” a Transport for Greater Manchester spokesman said.

“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.”

A spokesman for Stagecoach in Manchester told the Manchester Evening News the company was “shocked” by the reports.

“The safety of our customers and employees is our absolute priority. We are shocked at these reports and are taking them very seriously,” he said.

“We expect all of our customers to comply with the government’s rules on wearing a suitable face covering on public transport. A full internal investigation is underway, which includes the CCTV on the bus and interviewing the driver.”

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While the snake looks enormous, it’s much smaller than the 5.5m Burmese python owned by 31-year-old Marcus Hobbs.

Speaking to The Sun, Mr Hobbs said he purchased the snake when it was just 20cm long, but its now potentially one of the biggest snakes in captivity.

Named Hexxie, the animals costs thousands to keep and could be lethal if mishandled, squeezing a human to death in minutes and swallowing them whole.

But Mr Hobbs said he did not think his pet was dangerous, telling the publication, “I think people are so scared of snakes because they think they are going to kill them – but if people come around I can talk to them all day long about snakes to reassure them.

“I don’t think she’d be dangerous towards them (his children) but you have to use your common sense and I’m a responsible pet owner.”

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