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Friday, 5 July, 2002, 07:59 GMT 08:59 UK
Singapore family's toilet snake ordeal
Python from Africa
Pythons can turn deadly without warning
A family in Singapore was caught short when a two-metre (six feet six inches) long python took refuge in their toilet for two days.


It was very inconvenient

Tan Cheng-peng
The snake was first seen early on Tuesday morning as taxi driver Tan Kok-chye relaxed in the living room of his 10th-floor apartment after finishing his shift, Singapore's Straits Times reported.

He and his wife called the police, but the snake slithered away.

The family thought the snake had escaped down the squatting toilet, which they barricaded with a wooden washing board weighed down with a bucket of water.

"It was very inconvenient," their daughter, 28-year-old Tan Cheng-peng, told the newspaper.

"When we had no choice but to use the toilet, we would use it quickly and keep an eye out for the snake."

The snake appeared to have vanished, until Mr Tan's wife Chua went to the toilet on Thursday morning and was confronted by a black mass inside.


It is unusual that he managed to slither up ten flights

Amelia Lee, zoo spokeswoman
"I thought 'who threw this garbage bag in here?' Then I realised that it was the snake."

The police were once again called. They managed to capture the snake and hand it to the Singapore Zoo.

The zoo receives about 300 snakes a year, most of them reticulated pythons native to Singapore.

"They often end up in homes," said Amelia Lee, a zoo spokeswoman. "But it is unusual that he managed to slither up 10 flights."

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 ON THIS STORY
Tan Cheng-peng, daughter
"We are still worried that there might be another male python"
See also:

28 May 01 | Asia-Pacific
14 Feb 02 | Science/Nature
06 Dec 01 | Asia-Pacific
28 Jan 01 | Asia-Pacific
27 Dec 00 | Asia-Pacific
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