Real-Life 'Snake On A Plane' Jolts Pilot

Apr 5, 2012
Originally published on April 5, 2012 4:58 pm
Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit


Now to another story coming to us from down under about something that happened up high. Australian pilot Braden Blennerhassett had just taken off from Darwin yesterday in his twin engine cargo plane when he noticed that he was not alone. There was a snake on the plane.

BRADEN BLENNERHASSETT: You're trying to be as still as you possibly can.


That's Blennerhassett talking to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. The 26-year-old pilot was worried the snake might be poisonous, so he made an emergency landing as the snake slithered across the dashboard and down his leg.

BLENNERHASSETT: You know, if you try and make a sudden movement to adjust where your aircraft is, you're kind of worried about the snake taking that as a threat and biting you, I'd imagine.

CORNISH: Oh, you mean this kind of threat?


SIEGEL: Samuel L. Jackson from the 2006 movie "Snakes on a Plane." Luckily for Blennerhassett, he never had to take any R-rated action against the snake. He made it back to the ground safely without injury, but with a pretty good story to tell.

BLENNERHASSETT: I've seen it on a movie once, but never in an airplane. Yeah.

CORNISH: After he landed, a firefighter did see the snake, but couldn't capture it, so for now, the plane remains grounded. And, for everyone's sake, we hope there isn't a sequel. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.